Lemon-thyme Roast Chicken Salad with Red Pepper Pesto-Tomato Dressing

Pinch of Salt is now a year old! Can’t believe how quickly the last year has flown by! I know haven’t posted in a while, the last month or so have been so incredibly busy!

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Doug and I did a long weekend road trip to a wedding in the Karoo, I have been to London and back, I turned 25 (EEK!) and I hosted a Cuppa for Cansa (http://www.cuppa.org.za).

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The Cuppa for Cansa is an amazing event where individuals  or organisations can host a ‘cuppa’ to raise money for the CANSA foundation! There was so panic just before everyone arrived because I was still prepping food and cooking bran muffins in the oven but everything went off smoothly. I am so proud to say the Cuppa I host raised over R 4 000! So a big thanks to everyone who donated!

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Back the the food now! Now that summer is basically here (been in the mid-30’s this past week!), salads are literally flying out my kitchen! This is a great meal and any left over chicken is great for lunch the next day! The red pepper pesto and tomato dressing is an inspiration! I have used it several times in other meals because it is so so so delicious!

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The best part about this salad is that it is not so lettucey – just a bit of cos lettuce (which by the way is one of my favourite types of lettuce). It’s all about the lemon chicken and the dressing. Fresh, light and healthy! And you don’t miss or need a starch. In Doug’s mind a starch is needed to complete a meal, however I just feel people use as a tummy-filler. While I am all for a baked potato, a great bowl of pasta or stir fried noodles, this salad certainly doesn’t need anything else! The chicken can be cooked a day or two in the advance and just sliced up and served when you are ready.

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Lemon-thyme Roast Chicken with Red Pepper Pesto-Tomato Dressing and Garlic Yoghurt

Adapted from Woolworths Taste Summer Cook Book

Serves 4

  • 1 large free range chicken
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 6 springs of thyme
  • 2 Tbsp mixed herbs
  • 150g asparagus, blanched
  • 2 heads of cos lettuce
  • handful of rocket
  • Optional: 2 avo’s, sliced
  • Olive
  • Salt and pepper

Red Pepper Pesto-Tomato Dressing

  • 15 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 4 Tbsp red pepper pesto
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • Small handful of finely chopped parsley
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Salt and pepper

Garlic Yoghurt

  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 cup yoghurt
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C
  2. Place the lemon and thyme in the cavity of the chicken
  3. Drizzled with olive oil, season and sprinkle with mixed herbs
  4. Place on a baking tray and roast for about an 1 hour
  5. When cooked, remove from the oven and squeeze the lemon (which was in the cavity) over the top (reminder it is hot!)
  6. While the chicken is cooking, mixed all the ingredients for the red pepper dressing and for the garlic yoghurt
  7. Just before serving, place the salad ingredients on a platter (cost lettuce, rocket and asparagus), top with sliced roast chicken and avo
  8. Just before serving drizzle with the red pepper dressing and garlic yoghurt

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