I didn’t really know what to call this as it has a bit of everything in it and is loaded with flavour.. thus what I ended up calling it! This salad is a reworking of one of my favourite vegetarian salads but with a different dressing and a few other changes because… well I can’t make it the same now can I?
But I can make it very similar ha. If you’re a fan of chicken Caesar salad but want something lighter this one might be for you. The dressing has some honey it because it goes so well with the roasted chickpeas and the paprika coated chicken. If you’re more fructose intolerant than I am you could replace this with maple syrup. Do what works for you. Always.
Once again I’ve used chickpea flour in this recipe because it was the only flour I had on hand when I first went to make it and because I love it. Clearly. You can sub it for normal flour or a gluten free flour mix but I love the flavour and texture you get from chickpea flour, it has a slight nuttiness to it.
The chickpea croutons are another chickpea related addiction. The great thing about these is you can make a big batch, keep in a Tupperware container for up to a week and then just crisp them up in the oven for 5 minutes before you use them if the air has got them feelin a little softer. Yum! You can also change up the flavouring on them to suit what you’re making, get some oregano in there if you’re having them in a more Italian themed salad for example.
Adding lentils to this makes it a great stand alone filling salad when you’re after a quick summery dinner or something fresh and crisp at lunch. This simple lentil salad is another easy option too!
1 x 400g can of chickpeas or 1.25 cups of cooked chickpeas. Rinsed and well drained.
1 tsp hot paprika
1 tsp salt
1 Tbs olive oil
1 chicken breast
¼ cup chickpea flour (or any flour you prefer)
2 tsp sweet paprika
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
salt and pepper
Honey Mustard Dressing
1 tsp honey
1 heaped tsp wholegrain mustard
1 Tbs olive oil
2 Tbs lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
3 cups mixed lettuce
1.5 cups blanched green beans, (chopped into 3cm sticks)
1 avocado, finely sliced
½ cup roasted almonds
1/4 cup roasted sunflower seeds
2 Tbs flax seeds
½ cup finely sliced spring onion
2/3 cup shaved parmesan cheese
1 cup cooked puy lentils (can use canned lentils instead)
For the croutons
Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Spread chickpeas in a single layer on the prepared tray and roast for 10 minutes or until completely dry to touch.
In a medium sized bowl mix the paprika and salt. Add the dry chickpeas and toss to coat, spread out on the baking tray again and drizzle with olive oil. Roast for 30-45 minutes or until golden and crispy to bite into.
For the chicken
Mix the chickpea flour, sweet paprika, cayenne pepper and a pinch of alt and pepper in a bowl. Place parchment paper over the chicken breast and use a pestle, rolling pin or mallet to flatter the chicken until it is 1 cm thick. Cut the chicken breast into 4 even strips. Place the strips in the flour mix and toss to coat.
Heat olive oil in a pan on medium heat,, once hot add chicken. Cook 4 minutes each side and then remove and allow to rest while you assemble the salad.
Combine dressing ingredients in a jar and shake well to combine, taste and adjust seasoning.
And the salad
Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl excluding the avocado, croutons and reserving 2 Tbs of parmesan. Drizzle over half the dressing and toss to combine.
At this point you can either transfer to 4 smaller bowls to serve or continue in the larger bowl for family style serving.
Slice the chicken finely and place a portion on top of each salad bowl, followed by quarter of the avocado. Sprinkle with the croutons and the reserved parmesan. Drizzle with some extra dressing. Dig in!