20-Minute (Healthy!) Holiday Potluck Salad

Pomegranate chicken salad

by Chef Meg Galvin, SparkPeople.com Healthy Cooking Expert

Tomorrow is the annual Christmas Eve potluck, and you still have no idea what to bring. It has to be quick and easy. You still have gifts to wrap, a house to clean, cookies to bake...

Bypass the veggie trays and hummus and the precut cheese cubes. If you have 20 minutes, you can create a restaurant-quality salad that will impress your loved ones and get something healthy on the buffet table.

This seasonal salad is ready in a flash. You will love the softness of the greens with the crunch of the radish and pomegranate.

By reducing the pomegranate juice you intensify the flavor and reduce the amount of oil needed to create perfect vinaigrette.

Minutes to Prepare: 15

Minutes to Cook: 5

Number of Servings: 4

Tips

Daikon radish is long and slender, with white or light green skin. Often eaten with Asian cuisine, you should peel daikon before eating.
For this recipe, peel the daikon, slice in half, then slice into half-moons.


To remove the arils (seeds) of a pomegranate, score the skin as if you were going to cut the fruit into quarters.


Fill a bowl with water. Place the fruit in the water, and, while holding the fruit underwater to prevent juice splashes, break apart the sections. Gently separate the bright pink arils from the white pith. The pith will float; the arils will sink. Discard the outer skin as you go along, and, when all the arils have been separated from the pith and skin, pour off the water and the pith. You're left with pomegranate arils--and no mess!

Ingredients

Vinaigrette:
1/2 cup pomegranate juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil

Salad:
1 large shallot, diced
1 cup peeled sliced daikon radish
1 teaspoon black pepper
8 heaping cup of mixed greens
1 pear, sliced
12 ounces diced white meat chicken
2 tablespoon sliced almonds, toasted
1/2 pomegranate, arils only (see tip above)


Directions

Place the pomegranate juice in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer, cooking until it has reduced by half.
Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

Using an immersion blender or whisk, combine the mustard, juice reduction, and vinegar. Slowly add the oil to emulsify.

Place the shallots, radish, and greens in a large bowl and toss with the vinaigrette. Sprinkle on the pepper.
Divide the greens among four plates or bowls, top with the pear and chicken, divided evenly. Garnish with the almonds and pom arils.


Serving Size: Makes 4 servings, 3 cups per serving

What are you taking to your next holiday party?

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