Everyday Mom's Meals: June 2012

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Weekend Company {Guest Blogger Jim}

Good Morning! Happy Saturday! That's right, it's the weekend, and we've got a holiday coming up! Summer is definitely in full swing! I hope the next couple days are fantastic, however you are spending them, and I thank you for joining us today!

I am so excited for today's guest to share with you. He owns JumBy's Joint---Fort Wayne's first food truck! And O-M-G can this guy whip up some delicious food. If you live in my neck of the woods and want to read more about him, and the phenomenal food he is serving up, you can read my review of JumBy's here. You can also find JumBy's Joint on Facebook, Twitter and Urbanspoon! Be sure to tell them EMM sent you and get the Truffle Fries~ my absolute favorite and definitely in my Top 5 best foods I've had in my life!

Grab a cup of coffee, or tall glass of iced tea and welcome Jim to EMM~

I have had about five (5) weeks since accepting the opportunity to guest blog here today. I have contemplated at least a dozen different dishes each with it’s own interesting story. I actually had one blog completely written only to hit delete 15 minutes after writing it. With the weather getting unbearably hot I suppose the best option is something light and refreshing. I used to make a Citrus Chicken Salad when I was in the Army stationed in Virginia Beach. I was fortunate to belong to a great Baptist Church back then and our Pastor was my best friend. Ralph and I shared a passion for cooking that extended from the casual to actually creating a Ministry for married couples in the Church body called the Better Homes Club. Ralph and I never did anything traditional or by recipe choosing rather to ‘WHIP’ things together and then pray, literally. Following a brief deployment to Egypt where I experienced new spice combinations, I introduced Ralph to the world of Citrus, Fresh Herbs and Chicken. After creating and serving this salad at one of the Better Homes Club gatherings, I was launched into my love of cooking and creating. Ironically I can almost never repeat a dish since I write nothing down. Fortunately this time I have it documented from my time with Pastor Ralph. Here then is the recipe for my favorite summer salad.

Citrus Chicken Salad
1 large head of iceberg lettuce
 2 six-ounce containers of plain Greek yogurt (thicker than regular yogurt)
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons white sugar
3 shallots, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon red chili pepper, chopped
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1 pinch of cumin (this is an option, I like the bite)
2 red grapefruit or pummelos, peeled and sectioned (cut into Supremes if they don’t peel well)
4 cups pre-cooked chicken breast meat, shredded
1-1/2 cups unsweetened coconut meat, shredded
8 sprigs of cilantro

1. Remove outer leaves of Iceberg lettuce and rinse head under cold running water. Allow to air dry.
2. Cut a generous wedge, removing about a quarter of the head. Remove some of the inner leaves to julienne and set aside.
3. For the dressing, blend together the yogurt, lime juice, sugar, shallots, chili pepper, mint, and cilantro in a small bowl and chill well.
4. In a large bowl toss together the sectioned grapefruit or pummelos, chicken breast and coconut.
5. Ensure all ingredients are well chilled, add dressing and toss gently. To plate, place the fine lettuce julienne at the center of the plate and top with iceberg wedge. spoon the chicken salad mixture and garnish with a few grapefruit sections and sprigs of cilantro. 

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