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Thursday, May 22, 2014

BBQ Chicken Salad

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As it slowly becomes summer, I'm getting less and less excited to turn on the oven or stove to cook food. Salads are the perfect solution. They require no heating of any kitchen appliance and are super nutritious and easy.

A couple days ago, my dad talked me into doing a 10K (6.2 miles) trail run in August. I thought it wouldn't be too hard since I can street run 3.1 miles. But trailing running? That's a whole different ball field as I found out yesterday. My mom and I went to the park yesterday afternoon to start training for the 10K, but it probably wasn't the best idea to go that late in the day. It was 80 degrees out, muggy, and there was practically no wind blowing through the trails at all. We barely ran 2.5 miles! This 10K is going to take a lot more work than I thought it would... My goal is too just make it through this race and not pass out or throw up. Hopefully it'll be in the morning so we don't die of heat stroke while running as August is the hottest month of the year here in Indiana.

But I digress. You came for the salad.

I've been making this salad for quite awhile now and, to be honest, it's one of my favorites. I love barbeque chicken and putting it on a salad just makes things quite a bit easier for me. The dressing is so easy, yet so yummy, too, and can definitely be used for things other than this salad. Plus, you can mix and match the veggies to your liking. I personally prefer romaine lettuce for my salads, you, however, may not. Yes, I know romaine really doesn't have much nutritional value, but I love the crunch that it brings to a salad. Any other kind of salad green just gets wilted, which I do not enjoy unless it is supposed to be a wilted greens salad.

This would also be a great salad to make if you have leftover chicken on hand from a whole chicken you've roasted a couple nights before. Since my father isn't a big fan of chicken made in the oven, we rarely ever have chicken meat in the fridge that's not covered in some sort of sauce or fried until it's most certainly and utterly dead. Not good if your looking for moist, tender chicken to put on a salad.

And, hey, whoever said you had to put chicken on this salad? You can try pork, beef, tofu, or whatever else floats your boat. Now enjoy!

(This is hardly considered a "recipe" but I thought you might like to know the general ingredients that I use for the salad."

 For the salad:
  • romaine lettuce (or salad green of choice)
  • carrots
  • onion
  • cucumber
  • red, orange, or yellow pepper
  • chicken
  • shredded cheddar cheese (optional) 
For the dressing (you may need to double depending on how big your salad is):
  • 2 T. your favorite barbeque sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. orange juice concentrate or a splash of regular orange juice
1. Cut up your lettuce, carrots, onion, cucumber, and pepper and toss it in a bowl.
2. Cut up your chicken into bite-size pieces if necessary then add to the bowl. Sprinkle cheese on top.
3. In a smaller bowl whisk together your dressing ingredients.
4. Pour on top of your salad, then enjoy.

Question of the Day:

What's the farthest you've ever run? And do you prefer street running or trail running or not running at all? (The latter is my favorite type of running ;)

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