Hey, let’s admit it, we all need to get more veggies and greens into our diet and the easiest way I know how is to make up a salad. This the perfect weeknight, busy night, or any night salad. The vinaigrette consists of 4 simple pantry ingredients; lemon, extra-virgin olive oil, salt and pepper, and takes under 2 minutes to whip up. Trust me, this vinaigrette beats the pants off of any store-bought variety! Also, making your own vinaigrette is way less expensive than the store-bought variety, is fresher and the best part is that you know exactly what goes into it.
I’ve discovered a few things since starting the natural chef program. One thing is that I’m a bit more relaxed and confident in the kitchen, and that’s one thing I really wanted to get from this program, so YAY!
The other thing that I’m figuring out is simple, quick and easy is what works for me. I like effortless, uncomplicated flavors and menus. I don’t have time during the week to mess around with elaborate ingredients or recipes. I want an easy, healthy, family approved and taste bud worthy dinner that can be pulled together in under an hour. I know that’s sounds like a lot, but I’ve gotten pretty good over the years of planning out dinner menus for the kids and I that both satisfy my time frame and our taste buds.
So the other night I was craving some pan-roasted chicken, so I made up one of our favorite fall chicken dishes, rosemary skillet chicken. I love this chicken dish because the marinade can be made up in the morning, or a few hours before dinner. All you have to do come dinner time is brown the chicken in a cast-iron skillet and then pop it in the oven to finish cooking. The whole process takes about 25-30 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken. Lately, we’ve been using chicken thighs, and they’re super quick to roast up. I always pair this chicken with the kid’s favorite popovers, rosemary sea salt popovers. The combination of fresh rosemary and coarse sea salt is outstanding! As you know, popovers are a staple in our house and take 35 minutes to make from start to finish, making them an easy peasy weeknight side!I wanted a simple green salad to go with this dinner, so I pulled out some arugula and created this vinaigrette. This salad was the perfect pairing to this rich fall meal, and the kids and I gobbled it up.
This salad got rave reviews from the kids (double thumbs up), and we all decided it was a blog worthy recipe, especially since it was so simple to make.
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper - we love pepper in our salad, so I used a bit more than ¼ teaspoon
- ¼ cup (4 tablespoons) extra-virgin olive oil
- optional - pinch of red pepper flakes
- arugula or mixed greens - the amount you use will depend on the crowd you're serving
- chunk of Parmesan cheese
- In a small bowl or small glass jar with a lid, (I used a recycled glass jelly jar) whisk together 2 tablespoons lemon juice, ½ teaspoon sea salt and ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper (you can add the pinch of red pepper flakes if using).
- Slowly add in ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, whisking until emulsified, or put the lid on a jar and shake the ingredients until emulsified.
- Once the dressing is mixed, give it a taste and adjust the seasonings.
- Tasting tip: For the most accurate idea of what the dressing will taste like on your salad, dip a leaf into the dressing, shake off the excess, and give it a try.
- Put a bunch of arugula into a large salad bowl, lightly drizzle vinaigrette over the arugula and toss gently to combine.
- Using a vegetable peeler, shave thin slices of Parmesan over the top of the salad.
- Keep leftover dressing in a sealed jar in the refrigerator for 2 - 3 days.
- Make sure to bring the dressing to room temperature, as the olive oil will firm up in the refrigerator. Also, make sure to shake or whisk the dressing well before using again.
By the way, I’m attempting something new and would love to hear your honest feedback. I’m trying to get more posts out to you all, so I may cut back on step-by-step photos because, to be honest, they take a lot of time to photograph and edit, they slow down my site and I’m finding that they may not be needed. How do you all feel about that? Do the step-by-step photos help you, or do you really just want to see a photo of the end product and the recipe?
I will keep showing them, if the majority of you find them helpful, and of course, I will still take photos on the trickier steps or where I think they would be helpful in the cooking process.
Thanks in advance and have a happy Saturday! I’m off to Eli’s second soccer game of the day! GO TEAM LIGHTING!