Arugula Salad with Strawberries and Other Good Stuff
When I was a kid I remember having the extremely typical American dinner of steak, potatoes, and salad in heavy rotation. Or chicken, potatoes, and salad. The point is that we had a lot of salad, usually involving iceberg lettuce and ranch dressing, because children are ignorant and don’t like salads that involve flavor or nutrition. Sometimes they stay that way well into high school, ahem, not naming names.
I, however, was obviously ahead of my time, because I would always take most (all) of the avocado, cucumber, mushroom, croutons, and whatever other good stuff was in there for myself. Even then I knew that a salad without different textures and flavors is a waste of time. And stomach space.
I’m a firm believer in salad as an entree — they just need enough stuff in them. I first invented some variation of this salad last year in Spain, driven by boredom with spinach and the divine smell of ripe strawberries. And I discovered that arugula and strawberries are a fabulous combination: the peppery taste of the arugula is a great contrast to the sweet, tart strawberries. When you add salty feta, sweet corn, and the mild flavor of green onion it’s off the chain; I generally don’t use dressing for this salad because there’s so much flavor in the ingredients and between the juice from the strawberries and tomato there’s enough moisture, but a balsamic goes with it nicely. Throw in some chicken for the protein and you’ve got a refreshing, satisfying salad that’s a meal of its own. Buen provecho!
Strawberry and Arugula and Other Good Stuff Salad
A few handfuls of arugula (sometimes called rocket) salad
6 strawberries, sliced
1/2 tomato, chopped
1/3 cucumber, sliced
1 green onion, diced
boneless, skinless chicken breast
salt and pepper to taste
garlic salt and lemon pepper, for the chicken
Season chicken with garlic salt and lemon pepper and cook over medium heat. Meanwhile, chop the other ingredients and toss them in a bowl. When the chicken is almost done cooking, throw some frozen corn in the pan with it so it can absorb some of the flavor as it cooks. Toss it all together, season with salt and pepper, dress it if that’s your thing, and enjoy.