Yep, Scrumptious (Souvlaki) Salad!
If you know anything about Devin, you know that he is a brilliant musician and teacher…and that he strongly dislikes vegetables. He will eat them when they are placed in front of him, but he would really never voluntarily eat them (unless perhaps he has momentarily lost his mind). This makes cooking vegetarian meals rather challenging. I know he will eat a plate of veggies, but I would rather make something that he will also enjoy.
This salad (while it has chicken on it) is one of Devin’s absolute favorite dinners, which is unheard of. I know my mother-in-law is probably shocked to hear that not only does Devin eat this salad, but he loves it! It is all about the dressing. And partially the feta.
So the dressing is definitely the star. It is delicious.
Here is the recipe I follow:
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp (good) extra virgin olive oil
5 tbsp red wine vinegar
(juice from) 1/2 a lemon
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
lots of fresh cracked black pepper
I tend to put everything in an old olive (penn mac) container and mix it up. I leave the dressing on the counter because when you put it in the refrigerator, the olive oil begins to solidify. I think it is fine for a couple days out on the counter, but I doubt it will last that long. See the pictures below for assembly:
Oil and Vinegar
Fresh Squeezed Lemon
Dried Thyme and Oregano
Lots of Black Pepper
Shake Shake Shake
Next, I cut two boneless skinless chicken breasts into strips. I put them in a large freezer bag (for easy clean up) and pour about 1/3 of the dressing on them. Make sure all of the chicken is covered, throw it in the fridge and forget about it (for a few hours or a day).
I put whatever I have on hand in my salad. For this salad, I had some mixed greens, romaine, cucumber, celery, chickpeas, carrots and kalamata olives. I think that the must haves for it to be souvlaki are the romaine and olives.
Oh and without question lots of tasty tasty feta. I used to dislike feta up until about 5 years ago. Now, I cannot get enough of it. It is my go to cheese. Yum!
When ready, preheat the grill or a grill pan for the chicken.
It is my understanding that a souvlaki salad also must come with pita. I put the pita in foil and throw it on the grill with the chicken. It sort of steams it and makes it soft and warm come eating time.
I let the chicken get nice and browned on the grill (over high heat) until it looks like this:
Note: If you can see in the corner of the above picture, the salad dressing tends to leak out once you shake it up for the first time to put on the chicken. I recommend putting the container on a plate to avoid oil getting all over your counter.
It is up to you whether you want to dress the whole salad at once or just pour dressing on each individual salad. All I know is that Devin likes extra dressing on the side to dip his salad pita into.