A couple times a year we leave the beautiful, spacious, well-equipped digs of the Circle B Kitchen and head to our Western Headquarters on the Central Coast of California. Just a few minutes’ walk to the ocean, our little place here is great fun. It may be small, but I love cooking in this kitchen. Making good food really requires nothing more than fresh ingredients and sharp knives, and we have both in abundance here.
And so it is from this tiny, if not magical little place, that I share with you one of our favorite summertime meals, the kebob salad. Oh, man is this ever good.
Skewers of Italian sausage, chicken and cubes of hearty bread are grilled and then mixed with salad greens and a Caesar-like dressing and then topped with shards of parmesan cheese. No kidding.
The original recipe (from Tyler Florence) used a dressing which required an entire cup of olive oil. Not wanting or needing that much lubrication in my life, I found this recipe for a dressing on the Whole Foods website that seemed a much healthier alternative, while still keeping a similar flavor profile. It was extremely awesome. But I think you could use your favorite Caesar dressing if you wanted and it would work just fine.
I could eat this salad daily, and in fact I did make it 3 times within 2 weeks cuz I couldn’t stop thinking about it. No complaints from the husband – he just kept asking when we were having it again. Not soon enough I say.
Chicken Kebob Salad
Recipe adapted from Tyler Florence
4 links sweet Italian sausage
1 crusty baguette
2 to 3 medium, boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Extra virgin olive oil
Fresh-squeezed lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large head romaine lettuce, chopped
1 or 2 large tomatoes, chunked
1 large ripe avocado, diced (optional)
Flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
1 lemon, cut into wedges, for garnish
Preheat grill to medium-high heat. (I used a grill pan on the stove)
For the kebabs:
Slice chicken thinly, cut the baguette into 1-inch chunks, and cut the sausage links up into chunks, alternating cuts at 45 degree angles for nice triangular shapes.
Thread the sausage chunks, chicken and bread chunks onto separate skewers.
Lay the prepared kebabs out on your board and spritz with extra-virgin olive oil and several squeezes of lemon juice. Season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place the prepared kebabs onto preheated grill and cook for about 7 to 10 minutes per side, or until cooked through. The bread may be finished cooking before the meat, so either place it on the grill last, or remove it first.
While kebabs are roasting you can prepare the salad. Combine the dressing ingredients in a blender and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl add the chopped romaine, tomato and avocado. When the kebabs are done, let rest for a few minutes and then slide the kebab components off the skewers directly into the bowl. Add some dressing and gently toss to combine.
To plate, garnish with parsley leaves, shaved Parmesan and fresh lemon wedges.
2/3 cup (about 5 ounces) firm silken tofu
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)
2 anchovies (optional)
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire
2 cloves garlic
Ground black pepper, to taste
Put all ingredients into a blender and purée until smooth.