Balsamic Chicken Salad with Figs, Portobello and Candied Pecans

I am feeling rather uninspired lately and procrastination has been my second name since I came back from Europe.

I’m not kidding, I have this above sentence typed out, but left blank for the next 20 minutes. And the next 2 hours. and maybe saved for a day, or two..

I feel this space needs a little facelift but it’s so hard to pick out one template that I can use for a long time :/

Anyway.fig balsamic chicken

Here’s a quick fuss-free dinner salad made with chicken, figs and portobello mushroom. Feel free to add or substitute as you wish. If you don’t have figs, I think pear would work nice too. If you don’t have pecans, walnuts would be a good substitute. If you don’t have portobello mushroom, regular white or swiss brown mushrooms would be fine. If you prefer arugula to spinach, then toss with that instead. No rules, just some simple and delicious.

black figs

So I’m using these Black mission figs. Figs are a good source of dietary fiber, high in Vitamin B6 and rich in potassium(80% higher than bananas). Dried figs are available throughout the year but fresh figs have an incredible flavour, although really, they don’t last long.  They are versatile in sweet or savoury dishes or even as a stand alone snack. They are mostly available in Malaysia from August to October (not grown here, but imported in)

roast chicken portobello figs salad

So for this dish, I did a google on the ingredients I have at home and made a little changes and et, voila. A relatively complete meal packed with flavours is ready. The recipe is adapted Davida from The Healthy Maven. It’s a simple recipe, that do not require any stove top cooking. So you can literally leave the chicken and mushroom to bake in the oven and proceed to prepare the dressing and figs. Make sure to not over cook the chicken as it is afterall a piece of lean meat with no fat, so it can be dry if you over cook it.

Balsamic Chicken Salad with Figs, Portobello and Candied Pecans
Serves: 2
For the pecans:
  • ½ cup raw pecans
  • 1 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
For the chicken:
  • 1 chicken breasts, boneless & skinless
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp grapeseed / olive oil
  • ½ tsp Dijon mustard (I used wholegrain mustard)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and pepper to season
For the salad:
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 2 fresh black mission figs, sliced
  • 1 portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • ¼ cup blue cheese / gorgonzola, crumbled
For the dressing:
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil / grapeseed
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • ½ tsp Dijon mustard (I used wholegrain mustard)
  • ½ tsp honey
For the pecans:
  1. Preheat oven to 175 Celcius.
  2. Combine all the ingredients. Spread out on a parchment or silicone lined baking sheet.
  3. Bake for 15-20 minutes (watch closely and gently toss to make sure they don't burn).
  4. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 mins.
For the chicken:
  1. Combine all ingredients and marinate chicken for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 190 C
  3. Lay chopped portobellos along the bottom of a baking pan.Place chicken on top of portobellos and pour remaining marinade over portobellos.
  4. Bake for 10 mins. Remove from oven, flip chicken and bake for another 10 mins.
  5. Slice chicken.
For the dressing:
  1. Combine all ingredients until well mixed.
For the salad:
  1. In a large bowl combine spinach, blue cheese / gorgonzola, figs, portobellos and sliced chicken.
  2. Top with dressing, pecans and serve immediately




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