Friday, June 12, 2009

Pecan-Crusted Chicken Salad with Strawberries

***My favorite salads always include nuts (preferably pecans or walnuts), chicken, bleu cheese, balsamic dressing, and either strawberries or cranberries. I was recently flipping through the pages of the new May/June 2009 issue of Cooking with Paula Deen magazine when I stumbled across this recipe. It looked and sounded perfect to me, so I gave it a try. Brad and I both LOVED this one. It's light and delicious...perfect for the hot summer months!

The chicken has a wonderful taste, with the addition of the pecans. The tangy bleu cheese is a perfect contrast to the sweetness of the strawberries, and the dressing finishes it off flawlessly!This dish is very easy and you won't have a mountain of dishes and pans to clean up afterwards. ***

3 egg whites
1 cup finely chopped pecans
1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
1 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. dried thyme
3/4 tsp. salt
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/4-inch thickness and cut in half crosswise
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
3 (5 oz) bags spring salad mix
Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
1 (3 oz) package goat cheese, crumbled (I used bleu cheese)
12 strawberries, hulled and thinly sliced

Line a rimmed baking sheet with heavy-duty aluminum foil.

In a shallow dish, lightly beat egg whites.

In a separate shallow dish, combine pecans, bread crumbs, parsley, thyme, and salt. Dip each chicken breast in egg white. Dredge in pecan mixture, gently pressing pecan mixture onto chicken.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat 2 tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. Add 4 chicken breasts, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Place on prepared baking sheet. Repeat process with remaining 2 tbsp. olive oil and remaining 4 chicken breasts. Bake for 10 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

Let chicken stand for 10 minutes. Cut chicken into 1/2-inch thick slices.

Divide lettuce evenly between 8 serving plates. Top each with 1 sliced chicken breast. Drizzle with desired amount of dressing. Top each evenly with goat cheese and strawberries. Serve immediately.


The Duo Dishes said...

Bee-yoo-tea-ful salad here. This is a keeper!

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

I have a big chunk of gorgonzola... this looks perfect.

Lisa said...

OMG..that is not only beautiful, but right up my alley in terms of breaded chicken with greens or fruit..and the gorgonzola..YUM! I'm bookmarking this one!

RecipeGirl said...

Looks wonderful! The chicken does look like it's prepared pretty light (yay Paula Deen!) I wonder if you might be able to get away with just sauteing it in a bit of cooking spray instead of the oil.

Great summer salad!

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh, starred this, it looks sooooo good!