Saturday 11 March 2023

Rosemary Roasted Chicken Tenders and Mixed Herb Salad


We always presumed Salads to be boring and never fancied them much until a misplaced order at one of the Mediterranean restaurants we visited a while ago. We had taken a To-Go of Shawarma rolls and many hours later, we opened to find the salad version of it instead. But for once, we were delighted to find a misplaced order. The Salad surprised us with it's simplicity and subtle flavors. The Greens complimented the Protein and we were pretty full for a long time and in a very pleasant way, I must add. So our new found love is Salad with a protein of our choice and I try to keep the flavors simple.

At our local Farmer's Market, we get a bag of Organic Mixed Herbs for 2 dollars and it goes a long way for the two of us. Also there are no hassles involved in having this meal - simple and yet not compromising on flavors. Add whatever you fancy and your meal is ready!


For Roasted Rosemary Chicken Tenders -
* Chicken Tenders - 1 pound
* Carrot - 1 cup [cube size]
* Potato - 1 + 1/2 cup [cube size, I used with skin]
* Rosemary - 2-3 sprigs
* Garlic - 8-10 pods [Check the Notes section]
* Lime juice - 2 tbsp
* Lime wedges - 2 nos [small slices, Optional]
* Pepper - 1 tsp [Add according to your interest]
* Salt - For Taste
* Olive Oil or Vegetable Oil - 2 tbsp [For searing]


For Mixed Herb Salad -
* Herb Salad Mix - 150 gm [I used Organic Herb Salad mix]
* Red Onion - 5 tbsp [Finely sliced]
* Coriander - 1 bunch [Roughly chopped]
* Cherry Tomato - 1 cup [cut into half]
* Blackberries - 1/2 cup
* Balsamic Vinegar - 1 tbsp
* Lime juice - 1 tsp
* Pepper - 1/2 tsp
* Salt - For taste
* Feta / Mozzarella Cheese - 1/2 cup [Optional, while serving]

* If peeling Garlic is a humongous task [like me], just peel 2 pods and chop and add with the marinade. Chop off the head of the rest of the Garlic pod's and remove the outer loose layers and add to the Chicken while being placed in the Oven [Step 5]. They squeeze off easily once roasted. 
* If you prefer your Chicken soft, toss first your Vegetables like Carrot, Potato and fry them until it is half cooked and then add the Chicken Tenders and cook until it is of your preference. In this method, you can forego the Oven stage. I personally like to roast the Chicken, like the one's made in a Tandoor and hence give it the additional time in the Oven.
* Salads are best consumed fresh, hence make portions accordingly.


For Roasted Rosemary Chicken -
1. Wash the Chicken Tenders thoroughly and drain them well. Wash the Carrot and Potato and chop them into cube size and keep aside.
2. Into a large bowl, add the washed and drained Chicken Tenders, Potato, Carrot, Rosemary, chopped Garlic, Lime juice, Pepper, Lime wedges and salt. Mix well and marinate them for at least 30 mins.
3. Place a large Steel Pan or Cast Iron pan on a stove and let it get hot on medium-heat.
4. Add the Olive or Vegetable Oil and let it get really hot enough for searing the Chicken. Once it is really hot, add the marinated Chicken Tenders one-by-one and give 2-3 mins to each side until it attains golden brown color. Using tongs, reverse the Chicken and let it sear on the other side as well.
Step 5. Toss the remaining Potato, Carrot and the remaining marinade into the pan. Make sure to distribute the components evenly and not to overcrowd them.  Place the pan into a preheated Oven at 350 Degree Fahrenheit for about 30-40 mins. In between using tongs reverse the Chicken so that both the sides are evenly browned.
6. Once cooked to your preference, remove the pan from the Oven and let it rest.


For Mixed Herb Salad -
1. Slice the Onion finely and slice the Cherry Tomato into halves.
2. Wash and drain the mixed Herb Mix, Coriander and Berries.
3. In a large salad bowl, add the Herb Mix, Coriander, Berries, finely sliced Onion, halved Tomatoes, Balsamic Vinegar, Pepper, Lime and Salt. Give the salad mix a toss to mix well.

For Assembling -
1. In a serving bowl / plate, place the salad and the roasted Chicken, Carrots and Potato. Top it with some Feta or Mozzarella Cheese.

We liked ours a tad warm with the Fresh greens and a wedge of Lime for Lunch. And I gave the Cheese a miss since I liked it simple.

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