This refreshing, light but satisfying Tangerine Chicken Smoked Cheddar Salad with fennel, spinach, and pistachios is packed with texture and seasonal flavour.
Hello, everyone! Can you believe it’s February already? Although it’s sad that life passes by so fast, I am also happy we’re officially done with January which is indeed rather a strange month. Also, February means spring is approaching (Have you noticed days have gotten significantly longer already?)
On the other hand, I love winter for an abundance of seasonal fruit such as persimmons and pomegranates and citrus fruit from blood oranges to clementines. I am that person who enjoys seasonal fruit. Of course, I miss watermelons and cherries during the cold time, but I won’t buy them in winter because a) They’re expensive; b) They’re not that succulent and delicious than in season; c) See above – it’s the season of oranges! There are only two exceptions: pears and apples which are good all year round (You cannot beat apples picked in fall, though!) and, of course, tropical fruit like bananas and pineapples.
If you had a chance to peek inside my fridge, you would find it’s packed with tangerines and oranges. I can literally eat two pounds of citrus fruit at once. I also heard that it’s been discovered that 7 clementines or tangerines a day will make you happy. I don’t know either this is true or false (I haven’t found any proof on the web), but this works for me!
And I am suggesting to improve our mood and happiness right now. How? Let’s make this Tangerine Chicken Smoked Cheddar Salad. It’s super refreshing, and it brings a beautiful combination of sweet and tart
That’s a perfect winter salad to satisfy your palate and improve your mood. There’s only one question left: what are you waiting for? Go and try it!
- 2 medium skinless chicken breasts, sliced about 1,5 cm thick
- 2 tbsp.salted butter
- 1 tbsp. olive oil (You can use spiced oil)
- 1 tbsp fresh or 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
- a good pinch of garlic powder
- 1 – 1,5 cups baby spinach
- 4-5 tangerines (mandarines or clementines), peeled and segmented, with juices
- 1/3 medium fennel, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup cubed smoked cheddar
- 2 tbsp. salted pistachios, chopped
- Melt the butter and olive oil in a pan over high heat. Place the sliced chicken breasts and cook 2-3 minutes, turning once or twice and using a spoon, pouring the hot melted butter over the chicken, until it’s no longer pink.
- Decrease heat to low-medium. Add the thyme and seasonings, cover, and cook, flipping occasionally, for 8-10 minutes until very tender. If there’s not enough juices and fats, you can add 1 tsp. hot water the pan.
- Uncover, increase heat again, and let cook 2-3 minutes to get colour. Remove from heat.
- In a bowl combine the spinach, fennel, cheddar, tangerines (with juice which has been released when peeling and segmenting), mix, and let stand 5 minutes.
- Transfer the salad onto plates, arrange the chicken, and sprinkle with pistachios.
While I normally don’t use any dressing in similar salads (as they’re juicy enough thanks to fruit), you can always drizzle with a little of olive oil and citrus juice.