Tag Archives: arugula

Chicken, Squash and Goat Cheese Salad

2 Jul

Hello everyone!  Hopefully everyone is enjoying their summer so far.  Our summer is going quickly – it seems like we are traveling every weekend – but at least it’s for fun reasons!  Meanwhile I am also in transition with my job and will be starting a new job next week!  Very exciting, but it’s also keeping me very busy.  For that reason, I haven’t been able to dedicate as much time to this blog, which I apologize for.  Hopefully once things settle down again I’ll have more time… until then, I’m trying to simplify my life and only post things that I think are really post-worthy.

The recipe I want to share this week is for a healthy and hearty salad.  In the summer I crave salad for dinner a lot, but I also don’t want to end up hungry just an hour or two after dinner, so I need to find ways to make them feel more like a complete meal.  This salad definitely fits the bill, and would even be great in the fall or winter.  The roasted squash really adds a more hearty, creamy element, and the tangy goat cheese gives it lots of flavor.  Combined with some moist chicken (ahh so much better homemade than the stuff they put on salads at restaurants) and crunchy almonds, this salad is definitely satisfying.

I hope you enjoy!  And let me know if you have any questions!

Chicken, Squash and Goat Cheese Salad

Time: 40 minutes; Yield: 2 large salads

  • 1/2 whole butternut squash (or roast the whole thing and use the leftovers for another meal!)
  • 1 large or 2 medium chicken breasts
  • Extra virgin olive oil (to coat squash)
  • Balsamic vinegar (few tablespoons)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  • Roasted sliced almonds (the store-bought kind or toast your own)
  • 5 ounces (or 1 bag) arugula/spring mix
  • 3 ounces plain goat cheese, crumbled
  • Balsamic vinaigrette, see recipe below.

Preheat oven to 400°F.  Toss chicken breasts with some balsamic vinegar (a tablespoon or two, just to quickly marinate) plus salt and pepper.

To prep squash, peel with a vegetable peeler and slice lengthwise.  Scoop out seeds, then cut into a small dice (~1/2″ cubes).  The smaller the dice, the quicker it will cook, so keep it small if you’re in a time crunch.  Toss with enough olive oil to coat, salt, pepper and sage.  Place on a baking sheet.

Place chicken in a baking dish.  Roast chicken and squash for ~35 minutes, or until squash is tender and chicken reaches 165ºF internal temperature.

Let chicken rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing.  Slice against the grain, as thinly as possible.

To assemble salads, divide arugula or spring mix between two plates.  Top with red onion, almonds, crumbled goat cheese, squash and chicken.  Drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette.

Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing – for more on making your own vinaigrettes, check out my post on them here.

  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar of your choice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey (or sugar, optional)
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a container with a lid and shake to combine.  Alternatively, whisk all ingredients except for oil together, then slowly stream in oil while whisking constantly.  Store any leftovers in the fridge.

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Farfalle with Brie, mushrooms and arugula

18 Jan

If there was only one food I could eat for the rest of my life, I’d probably choose Brie.  Or bagels.  Or enchiladas.  Or chocolate chip cookies.  Anyway, that’s besides the point.

I love Brie, but I definitely feel like there are not enough opportunities for me to eat it.  Picnics (Brie and a baguette and a plastic knife = a struggle I have had more times than I care to share) and holiday parties (puff pastry wrapped baked Brie.. so greasy, so delicious, amen) are just not frequent enough to fulfill my Brie quota.

ANYWAY, I made this pasta, originally from Real Simple Magazine.  It’s pasta with melted Brie, sauteed onion and mushrooms and wilted arugula.  I made this as a quick and easy lunch for one, so I like that this recipe comes together quickly and that you can very easily adjust the amount you make (you will have some leftover mushrooms or red onions this way, but those can be used in so many ways – stir fry, omlettes, salads, etc so I don’t mind having extras in my fridge.).

The mix of the creamy, rich Brie and the mushrooms which soak up all the wine flavor was pretty delicious.  And the peppery arugula adds a nice freshness and color.  In general I’d say this recipe is pretty yummy, but definitely not over-flavorful, just mild and subtle.  So make sure to season the pasta water generously with salt before cooking the pasta, and be generous with the salt and pepper when cooking the mushrooms and onions.   Also, use a good wine, because the flavor really gets soaked up by the mushrooms.  I actually used vermouth instead of wine, because I didn’t want to open a whole bottle for the recipe.  I keep vermouth in my fridge all the time (it keeps, opened, for months) as a substitute for wine for recipes or for martinis ;-).    If you really want to jazz this recipe up, and aren’t a vegetarian, I bet adding some proscuitto or pancetta would be pretty awesome in it too.

Farfalle with Brie, mushrooms and arugula  recipe from Real Simple Magazine

Time: 20 min, Yield: 4 servings

  • 12 ounces farfalle (or any shape pasta you like!)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 lb mushrooms, quartered (I used baby bella)
  • 1 small red onion, sliced
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine or vermouth
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 ounces Brie, cut into 1/2″ cubes, most of the rind removed (but you don’t wanna lose too much of the Brie! That would be tragic)
  • 4 cups baby arugula

Cook the pasta according to the package directions, making sure to reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water before draining (using the starchy pasta water to help make a sauce is a great trick).

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.   Add the mushrooms and onion and cook, tossing occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to release their juices, 2 to 3 minutes.  Add the wine, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook until the mushrooms begin to brown, 5 to 6 minutes.

Toss the pasta with the Brie and reserved cooking water until the pasta is coated.  Stir in the mushroom mixture and arugula and serve.