Chicken Salad with Strawberries & Dried Cranberries

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    The recipe swap theme for this week was entree salads.  I was excited about this because in the summertime we make a lot of entree salads and I’m always looking for new ones to add.  I received a chicken salad with oranges and cranberries.  It looked really good but I don’t much like canned oranges and I had a basket of fresh strawberries so I switched them out.

    The vinaigrette dressing was a raspberry vinaigrette, but I didn’t have any raspberry vinegar so I had to improvise.  Because I was already putting strawberries in the salad, I used a few pureed strawberries and one minced strawberry to give the dressing a light, fruity flavor.  I really ended up liking this recipe.  The strawberries and cranberries added a bit of sweet and tart to the salad.  The dressing was sweet, sour, and tangy all at once.  This is a great summer salad.

Chicken Salad with Strawberries and Dried Cranberries (adapted from Sweet Beginnings)
For each salad:
1 boneless, skinless, chicken breast
2 strawberries, hulled and quartered
1/4 c. dried cranberries
2 c. lettuce

For the dressing:
3 strawberries
1/3 c. red wine vinegar
1/2 c. olive oil
3 T. honey
1 t. sugar
1 T. Dijon mustard
1 t. tarragon
1 t. salt
1 t. black pepper

1.  Cook the chicken in a skillet and cut into strips or bite sized pieces.  Set aside to cool.

2.  To make the dressing cut two strawberries in half and puree.  Put the pureed strawberries as well as the other minced strawberry in a small bowl.  Add the vinegar, olive oil, honey, and sugar.  Whisk until smooth.  Then whisk in the remaining ingredients.  Put in the refrigerator until ready to use.

3.  To assemble the salad put the lettuce on a place.  Place the quartered strawberries around the edges.  Place the chicken strips on the salad and sprinkle with cranberries.  Drizzle the dressing over top of the salad and enjoy.

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