Meet my current obsession: it’s a bunch of grilled things, chopped, and then tossed with a simple vinaigrette.
I’m a little weird in that I can get excited about a salad. Really excited about a salad. And I frequently do.
All of the squeeeees.
Want to get excited about salad, too? Then you should make this one.
The salad has grilled zucchini (you know I love that one), chicken, corn, tossed with every so lightly charred romaine. I added two of my other favorite summer vegetables – grilled eggplant and grilled green tomatoes – to the salad before tossing with a light lemon-garlic-basil vinaigrette and topping with crumbled goat cheese.
The first night, we eat it warm but the smokey, grilled leftovers are fabulous cold for lunch the next day.
And you don’t have to stop with the eggplant and green tomatoes. We have made a salmon version, a TexMex version, and a bbq version – all coming to a summer salad-obsessed blog near you soon!
Grilled Summer Chopped Salad
Smokey, grilled summer vegetables, lightly charred romaine, and a lemon-garlic-basil vinaigrette.
- 1/3 cup olive oil, plus ~2 Tbsp more for dressing
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tbsp chopped fresh basil
- Red pepper flakes
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1 eggplant (optional)
- 2 large green tomatoes (optional)
- 3 corn cobs
- 1-1.5 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to even thickness
- 3 zucchini
- 1 large head romaine or 2 heads of romaine hearts
- 2 oz crumbled goat cheese
- Heat the grill to medium.
- Whisk together 1/3 cup olive oil, garlic, basil, a generous pinch of salt and pepper, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and the lemon zest. Set aside while prepping the vegetables.
- If using the eggplant, slice into 1/2-inch rounds and generously sprinkle with salt. Let rounds sit in a colander for 10-15 minutes to draw out excess moisture before placing on the grill.
- Slice the tomatoes into 1/3-inch rounds, slice the zucchini length-wise into 1/2-inch thick planks and shuck the corn, removing husks and silk.
- Slice the romaine in half lengthwise (through the core) and rinse well.
- Whisk the vinaigrette and then lightly brush the vinaigrette over the vegetables. Pour about 1 Tbsp onto the chicken, brush to coat both sides, and reserve the remaining vinaigrette for the dressing - make sure you pour the vinaigrette over the chicken and then brush it, you don't want to contaminate the vinaigrette. Places the chicken and all vegetables except the romaine on the grill - you might have to do this in two batches - you can use a grill basket or a double-layer of lightly oiled foil for the vegetables.
- Cook the chicken until done, about 5-6 minutes a side. Cook the vegetables until lightly charred, flipping the slices once and rotating the corn cobs a couple of times.
- Grill the romaine 1-2 minutes on each side - I turn off the grill and just use the residual heat from the grates.
- Add enough olive oil to the remaining dressing to reach 1/4 cup and then whisk in the lemon juice.
- Slice the corn off the cob and place in a mixing bowl large enough to mix the entire salad.
- Chop the chicken and vegetables into bide-sized pieces and add to the bowl along with the got cheese. Pour the dressing over top, toss to mix well, and serve.
Yields: 4-6 servings
Estimated time: 30 minutes