Posts Tagged ‘Lemons’

Lemony Artichoke Chicken Salad with Carrots | Relishing It

As usual around this time of year, I find myself in a bit of a food rut.  It feels like we should be eating local fresh asparagus and ripe sweet strawberries, but our finicky Minnesota climate just can’t decide if it wants to launch into full-on Spring or not. So, I wait patiently for these beautiful gems to show up at the Farmers Market– because, nothing comes even close to tasting as good.  In the meantime, lighter fare is slowly creeping into my subconscious and I find myself using my Dutch oven less and less.

Lemony Artichoke Chicken Salad with Carrots | Relishing It

Back in my college days (many years ago), I worked as a caterer.  I really enjoyed working the events and learning about different foods.  One of my favorite dishes we did was one that is similar to the salad I’m sharing today commonly known to us then as the “President’s Salad”, because it was the President of the University’s favorite salad and he always requested it for his catered functions.  It was delicious.

Lemony Artichoke Chicken Salad with Carrots | Relishing It

This is my version of that salad.  I like to keep things simple and light and pack it full of robust lemon flavor.  It is definitely customizable, adding pasta stretches it a bit for larger crowds (just double the amount of sauce), which is nice for summer gatherings.  Some people may prefer the sauce in more abundance, so adding a bit more mayonnaise is completely do-able.  Surprisingly, the combination of lemon, artichokes, and carrots are a fantastic match and can make it feel like you’re eating Spring, even if you are still waiting for it to fully arrive.  Finishing it with creamy cashews add a nice crunch that this salad definitely needs.   I hope you are all enjoying a lovely Spring in your parts!

Lemony Artichoke Chicken Salad with Carrots | Relishing It

The Recipe: Lemony Artichoke Chicken Salad with Carrots

(serves 4)

2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts, roasted and shredded or about 2 1/2 cups rotisserie chicken, shredded

4 large carrots, peeled and julienned (or coarse grated)

1 small celery stalk, chopped

1 14-ounce can of quartered artichoke hearts, rinsed

handful of cashews and extra cilantro, for garnish

The Sauce:

1/4 cup mayonnaise (or more, if desired)

juice of 1 medium lemon

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

1 garlic clove, minced

salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Drizzle a bit of olive oil on both sides of the chicken breasts.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Roast for about 40 minutes (the time will vary depending upon the size of the breasts) or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast reads 165°F.  Remove from oven.  Cover with foil and let rest for about 10  minutes.  Shred with forks or your hands, when cool.

In a small bowl, whisk the sauce ingredients together and set aside.

Combine the shredded chicken, artichoke hearts, carrots, and celery in a large bowl.  Pour the sauce over the contents and use tongs to gently fold everything together (so the chicken doesn’t fall apart too much).  Taste and re-season with salt and pepper, if necessary. This salad is best if it spends a little time in the refrigerator for the flavors to meld.  Serve with cashews and additional cilantro sprinkled on top.  Enjoy!

As always, thanks so much for stopping by Relishing It!  Take care.



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Salt-Preserved Lemons | Relishing It

Lemons!  Just seeing these bright yellow beauties puts me in a happy mood.  This time of year we’re all about the citrus in our home.  And though I know I’ve already shared a preserved lemon recipe here previously, I like having options, so I thought I’d share this one with you, as well.

Salt-Preserved Lemons | Relishing It

Salt-Preserved Lemons | Relishing It

You see, this is the version that I tend to make more often.  The other one is lovely, don’t get me wrong. It’s especially delightful when you make impressive Moroccan food.  But, often I find that a simpler, dare I say “plain” version, such as this one is more versatile.  This preserved lemon recipe works with everything!  Plus, it takes about 5 minutes of work for a result that can be enjoyed for the entire next year.  I think we’re winning here, friends.

Salt-Preserved Lemons | Relishing It

Ok.  You want one other important little tidbit as to why I make this version more often?  It’s to do with my husband.  As I mentioned before, he fancies himself a bit of a mixologist, and he makes a cocktail called The Corsair that uses the juice from preserved lemons in it.  It’s citrusy, salty heaven.  So, for that reason alone, I make this plain version.  I’ll share the recipe for the cocktail once the weather warms a bit.  I don’t pack quite as many lemons into the jar, and instead pour more fresh juice into it.  You can certainly pack that thing tightly so you get as many fresh lemons in there as possible. Of course, if you want to start experimenting with cocktails made with salty preserved lemon juice, you know what to do.

Salt-Preserved Lemons | Relishing It

Now even though you may not be thinking of using preserved lemons, now is the time to make them.  It is, in fact, citrus season.  Not only will you get lemons at a good price, but they’ll have the most flavor.  Buy organic lemons, as they are not covered in wax.  However, if you can’t get organic lemons in your neighborhood, just make sure to wash them thoroughly to remove the waxy film that may be on them.  Preserved lemons can last for up to a year in your refrigerator.  They are a wonderful bright addition to braised meats, chicken, grain salads, or just about anything that could use a little oomph!  You only use the peel part of the lemon, not the pulpy inside.  And generally it is a good idea to give it a rinse to remove the excess salt.

Salt-Preserved Lemons | Relishing It

Salt-Preserved Lemons | Relishing It

The Recipe: Salt-Preserved Lemons

(make 1 quart)

about 2 pounds of organic lemons (regular can be used, just wash well)

about 1 cup sea salt or kosher

Wash the lemons well.  Add 2 tablespoons of sea or kosher salt to the bottom of a clean quart jar.  Cut an “X” on one lemon end until about 3/4 of the way down.  Repeat for as many lemons as will fit into your jar.  Fill the opening with salt (about 1 tablespoon) and place into the jar.  Squish as many as you can into the jar and gently squeeze juice out of the lemons as you do this.  When the jar is full of lemons, add lemon juice from the remaining lemons until it reaches the top of the jar.  Place the lid on the top and gently turn the jar back and forth to incorporate the salt on the bottom.  Keep the jar on the counter for about 3-4 weeks, turning it every so often.  Then refrigerate after that for up to a year.  Use clean tools to remove the preserved lemons when wanting to use some.  Rinse off the excess salt when incorporating it into meals.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!



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