Nearly every Sunday during the summer I head to the Hyde Park Farmers’ Market. The farmers’ market started in a bank parking lot and is now so large that it is held in Hyde Park Square. It has become a bit of a ritual to walk to the market, grab a coffee and browse around to see what all of the vendors have to offer. Some of my favorite items are lettuce, which lasts for weeks when I buy it from the market, and home-made pastas and sauces.
On my last visit I picked up some end-of-season corn on the cob, a tomato, a pepper and some basil and cilantro. I decided that I wanted to make a southwest salad for dinner and that all of these items (well, not the basil) would be perfect. I’ve grown basil before, but have never tried cilantro. The price for both plants was only $3 which is so much less expensive than buying from the store. Both of them smelled amazing and I hope I’ll be able to keep them alive through the winter. If anyone has any tips, let me know!
I was able to make the southwest salad that I had planned using just the ingredients that I bought at the farmers’ market and items that I already had at home. I was so filling and tasted so fresh! It really is amazing how much better food can taste when it hasn’t been shipped across the country and been sitting on a store shelf for a week. For some reason my bowls always look small when I take pictures, but this really is an enormous salad! See below for how to make it…
First, season the chicken with olive oil, salt and pepper. Turn a skillet on medium and cook it on each side for approximately 5 minutes. While the chicken is cooking, run the ear of corn (still in the husk) under water to get it wet. Then put it in the microwave (yep, still in the husk) for 3 minutes. While the chicken and corn are cooking, get a bowl ready with your lettuce and chop up all of the other vegetables. Add the tomato to the lettuce and put the peppers and onion in a skillet with a little olive oil. Saute them on medium for about 3 minutes, until they are soft, and then turn off the heat. I threw my beans in the skillet then to let them warm up a little. Take the corn out of the microwave and take off the husk to let it cool. Once it is cool enough to handle, cut the corn off the cob.
Now you are ready to finish putting your salad together. Throw in the peppers, onions, beans and corn. Add your sliced chicken to the top of the salad. You can top-off the salad with whatever sounds good. I used shredded Mexican cheese, salsa, sour cream and some of my fresh cilantro. Enjoy!
Ingredients: (serves one)
2 cups lettuce
1 small chicken breast, cooked and sliced
1 ear corn, cooked and cut from cob
1/4 black beans, drained & rinsed
1/4 tomato, diced
1/4 green pepper, sliced and sautéed
1/4 small red onion, sliced and sautéed
Additional toppings: shredded cheese, salsa, sour cream, cilantro