This salad was inspired by one I had at San Diego’s Tiger Tiger last month, but I’d like to think I improved upon it a bit. The tanginess of the citrus and the freshness of the basil are perfect complements to the orange-poached chicken. When it comes to chicken breasts, it’s hard to keep them moist, but poaching is an easy way to ensure that it stays juicy and is really simple to do.
Citrus Basil Chicken Salad
The Citrus Basil Chicken Salad features the tanginess of citrus and the freshness of basil, combined to complement the succulent chicken.
- 2 skinless chicken breasts
- 8 oz mixed salad greens microgreens or spinach
- 1 red grapefruit
- 3 oranges
- 1 small bunch of fresh basil sliced
- 1 pomegranate or a small package of pomegranate arils
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1 Tbsp orange zest
- 1 tsp grapefruit zest
- 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
Poach the chicken breasts first. Place them in a small pot with the rind from one orange and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a very low simmer (barely bubbling), and cover. Cook for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and let sit for another 10 minutes. Remove the chicken and let cool.
Meanwhile, prepare the dressing by combining the juice of two oranges, orange zest, grapefruit zest, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl. Whisk to combine.
Arrange the salad with the mixed greens, basil, pomegranate, walnuts and supremes of grapefruit and orange. To make supremes – which are essentially wedges of citrus – cut the top and bottom off the fruit. Use a knife to remove the skin and white pith. Then, slice on each side of the citrus segment so that it comes away cleanly.
Slice the chicken and top the salad with it and a few spoonfuls of the dressing.