“This Mediterranean Diet-style meal is loaded with flavor and dense with nutrients. Save prep time and effort, use bagged, pre-washed organic leaves and whole grape tomatoes,” says Registered Dietitian Tamara Duker Freuman, who specializes in medical nutrition therapy for digestive disorders. She is also a gluten free blogger for US NEWS & WORLD REPORT’S new health page eat + run and hosts a popular blog devoted to healthy eating and gluten-free living at www.tamaraduker.com.
If you don’t feel like grilling outside (or the weather isn’t cooperating), this recipe is just as delicious when prepared using a countertop or stovetop grill. Or, sauté the chicken in a large, hot oiled skillet for about the same amount of time as the grilling instructions. Bake the pitas in a 425-degree oven (or toaster oven) until crisp and golden, about 8 minutes.
Grilled Chicken Souvlaki Salad
1 cup Green Valley Organics plain yogurt
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus 4 teaspoons for pitas
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 minced garlic cloves, divided
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and ground black pepper
2 large chicken breasts (about 1 pound), halved crosswise to make 4 thin cutlets
8 cups prepared salad greens such as arugula or baby field greens
2 cups each: halved cherry tomatoes and seedless diced cucumbers, lightly salted
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup pitted chopped kalamata olives
4 large pocket-less pitas
1. Mix yogurt, 3 tablespoons of the oil, lemon juice, 1 of the garlic cloves, oregano, and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Pour half the yogurt mixture in quart zipper-lock bag; add chicken and let stand at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours. (Can be refrigerated for 2 days.) Reserve remaining yogurt mixture as the salad dressing.
2. When ready to serve, heat a gas grill igniting all burners on high for at least 10 minutes or build a hot charcoal fire. Clean grate with a wire brush and then lubricate well with an oil-soaked rag. Meanwhile, put arugula, tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, feta, and olives in a large bowl. Mix remaining 4 teaspoons of oil with remaining 2 garlic cloves and brush over one side of each pita.
3. Place chicken on hot oiled rack and grill until impressive grill marks form, about 3 minutes. Turn chicken over with a spatula and continue to cook until chicken is just cooked through, about 2 minutes longer.
4. Add pitas, oiled side up, the last 2 minutes of grilling. As chicken comes off the grill, turn pitas and continue to grill until golden brown on remaining side, another 1 to 2 minutes.
5. Place a pita on each of 4 pasta plates. Toss salad with dressing, mounding a portion of salad on each of the pitas. Serve.
*Recipe created for Green Valley Organics by Pam Anderson, who along with her daughters, blogs at threemanycooks.com. She is AARP’s official food expert and a contributing columnist for Runner’s World magazine. She is former Executive Editor of Cook’s Illustrated magazine and the author of seven cookbooks.*