It is always a good idea to have a back up plan if dinner unexpectedly goes awry. My husband was grilling chicken leg quarters on the grill with our grilled chicken sauce and when he went to go check on them he practically lost his arm hairs opening the grill due to the giant flames that popped up when he lifted the lid. Now those were charred leg quarters, or cajun style as I like to call them because they sure were blackened; thankfully the meat underneath the burnt skin was done, and tasty, so my husband, being the calm and collected thinker that he is (not like me who would have been in another room crying over burnt chicken) skinned off the char, cut the meat off of the bones, and threw it all into the pot with the grilled chicken sauce.
Along with the chicken in the sauce we made our favorite Uncle Ben’s Rice Pilaf, got out the Mission corn tortillas, opened a can of black beans, shredded some mild cheddar cheese, minced some onions, and made up our own Plan B Chicken Tacos. I must say they were extraordinary and will be going onto our normal meal plan as part of the rotation. It is crucial to heat up the tortillas so they are pliable and do not break when folding them. I was glad that dinner got “messed up” and we discovered these yummy tacos.
If you have been wondering why I have been slow to post new recipes it is because we have been eating pretty basic meals the last week, and I have been completely engrossed reading The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread by Peter Reinhart. I have been so psyched to try making my own artisan breads that my mind has been completely taken over with thoughts of preferments, barm, steam pans, and everything that is involved in making artisan bread that our creative cooking has been put on hold. However, I made a large list of recipes and meals I want to try soon, so hopefully I will get back to posting more frequently. Until then, go enjoy this salad!
My mom wanted to know what she could get from the farmer’s market this morning; I said any berries she could so we could try this fantastic salad for dinner. I do not like walnuts, as a general rule, but they were delightful in this salad. There were beautifully bitter notes against the sweet of the jam and berries. The balsamic in the vinaigrette packed quite a punch, so use less if you do not like that flavor very much. I may not eat enough salads, but I will look forward to making this one again.
Blueberry Spinach Salad
1 C. chopped walnuts
1/3 C. Triple Berry Preserves
1/3 C. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 C. balsamic vinegar (or slightly less if you prefer)
Green Leaf Lettuce, cut into strips
1 C. blueberries
small red onion, finely minced
crumbled blue cheese
freshly grated parmesan
- Toast the walnuts on the stovetop, over medium-low heat, until fragrant, about 4 minutes. Watch them carefully and make sure not to burn them. Whenever I follow directions for toasting nuts I inevitably burn them.
- Whisk together the preserves, evoo, and vinegar to make the vinaigrette.
- Make a mix of the lettuce and spinach that you like, and put your salad together however you choose. The greatest part about salads is that you can add more or less of anything you like or do not like.
We ate our salads with a chicken breast grilled on the grill and then sliced, along with couscous. It was fantastic.
Adapted from Southern Living’s Blueberry Fields Salad.