Years ago, in what sometimes seems like another life, I wrote a Salads book for Marks & Spencer and within it there was a recipe for a Nun’s Salad – basically a salad with some black and white ingredients. As I recall it had white chicken with white potatoes, black grapes and raisins. I remembered it when making this blackberry and chicken salad. This one doesn’t have the high calorie stats and fat from the mayonnaise-coated former model, and suits my current bariatric regime much better. It still can be called a ‘Nun’s’ salad though and has a ‘better fit’ since it’s certainly more saintly!
It’s a sort of Italian style Panzanella salad where you tear a little toasted bread (or toss some croutons) into some salad ingredients for a bit of substance and, providing I choose a good wholemeal type of bread, I can tolerate it well and the nutritional stats are fine. This one has been made with some walnut bread ripped into small chunks and mixed with shredded chicken breast, watercress, crumbled feta and some plump whole blackberries just begging to be eaten. The whole assembly is tossed with a zesty lemon dressing with a hint of honey and fresh thyme. The walnut bread works well with the blackberries but you can use any other kind.
Please note the quantities only serve 2 ‘normal’ appetites. Enjoy no matter whether you’re a believer or not!
NUN’S CHICKEN AND BLACKBERRY SALAD
2 slices walnut bread, ripped into small chunks (about 75 g/3 oz)
2 tsp olive oil or low-fat cooking spray/mist
1 cooked skinless and boneless chicken breast, shredded
1 bunch watercress/arugula, trimmed
50 g/2 oz light feta cheese, crumbled
100 g/scant 1 cup blackberries
2 tbsp low-fat or fat-free vinaigrette style dressing
grated zest ½ lemon
½-1 tsp honey
2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves chopped
- Preheat the oven to 200 C/400 F/gas 6. Put the bread on an ovenproof tray, drizzle with the oil or spritz with the low-fat spray/mist. Toast in the oven for 5 minutes until crisp.
- Place the chicken, watercress/arugula, feta and blackberries in a bowl. Add the cooked bread croutons.
- Mix the dressing with the lemon, honey and thyme and add to the salad mixture. Toss gently to mix and serve.
WLS PORTION: ½-1
CALORIES PER PORTION: 250
Image courtesy of www.berryworld.com