Often when I ask Wingnut what he'd like for dinner, he asks for a nice big salad. I have a few main dish salads we rotate through the menu with salad being for dinner about once a week. One of our favorites is Chicken Caesar Salad. It is also extremely easy and fairly low calorie.
Chicken Caesar Salad for a crowd (family of 8)
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts sliced into thin strips along the bias
Salt and pepper to taste
2 TBSP olive oil
1 TBSP flour
1 TBSP cornstarch
6 tsp vegetable oil
1 head of romaine lettuce torn or chopped into bite size pieces
1 cup freshly shredded parmesan
2 cups croutons ( you can buy these or make your own)
Caesar dressing or you can use this creamy parmesan dressing from a previous post
After slicing chicken salt and pepper to taste and toss to distribute evenly. In large bowl stir together oil, flour, and cornstarch. Add sliced chicken and toss to coat. This is a technique for keeping chicken breast moist and tender called "velveting". I've found velveting the chicken is absolutely crucial to the flavor of this salad. In a large non-stick skillet heat 2 teaspoons of the oil over medium high heat until it shimmers. Add 1/3 of the chicken and spread out in pan so that one side is in complete contact with the pan and the pieces of chicken are not touching each other (this ensures a good sear and crust on the chicken and keeps the chicken from just steaming in the pan). Cook without stirring for one and a half to two minutes. Check one piece of chicken for a golden brown crust on cooked side. If this is accomplished, flip all the chicken pieces to the other side and cook on second side for another one and a half to two minutes, checking this side for doneness before transferring to a clean large bowl. Repeat process with a second third of the chicken and again with the remaining chicken adding more oil to the pan as needed between batches.
Layer lettuce, chicken, croutons, parmesan and dressing on each plate to serve.