Sunday, March 18, 2012

CPK Moroccan Chicken Salad

In the last month I've become slightly addicted to California Pizza Kitchen's Moroccan Chicken Salad. It's gluten free, full of good foods, and utterly amazing. Due to all of that, I was spending way too much time and money at CPK, so I though I'd figure out how to make it at home.

The trickiest part of this creation was the salad dressing. I tried making my own, I tried different kinds, and eventually I ended up with Girard's Champagne Dressing, which is gluten free, but doesn't say that anywhere on the bottle. So tricky, people, so tricky! The good news is that it's at Fry's and most grocery stores. The bad news is that it's not exactly the healthiest salad dressing out there, ingredient wise, but it's not altogether awful, either. That being said, it tastes exactly like CPK's version with it and nothing else came close.

As for the chicken, the first time around I used chicken breast and the second time around I made it easy on myself and grabbed a roasted chicken from Sprouts. Saved me some time, so I recommend that.

Here's what I came up with in total, with some help from Google and various random other people trying to make it. I planned it to be a big salad so that I would have plenty of leftovers for lunches in the week, so keep that in mind. You should get at least 4-6 servings out of this baby, depending on if it's a side dish or the meal all in itself.

CPK Moroccan Chicken Salad
2 chicken breasts, chopped OR 3 cups of chopped roasted chicken
1 cup butternut squash, diced
1 cup of beets, diced
1/4 cup of dried cranberries (look for the nitrate free ones)
1 avocado, diced
2 hard boiled eggs, diced
3 medium sized carrots, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup of dates, diced (nitrate free, again)
1 five ounce container of baby spinach
1/4 to 1/3 cup of roasted almond slivers
1/4 cup Girard's Champagne Dressing
1.5 TBSP olive oil
1 TSP cinnamon
1 TSP ground coriander

1. If you're baking the chicken yourself: Combine cinnamon, coriander, and olive oil in a bowl to make a  paste like texture. Coat the chicken and bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes, or until fully cooked, then let cool.

If you want to make this easy and get a roasted chicken: Combine the cinnamon, coriander, and olive oil in a bowl. Chop and measure out the chicken, then throw into the bowl with the mix and coat evenly.

2. For the squash: Slice the squash in half lengthwise and place in cooking dish with an inch of water, face up. After it's cooked, let cool and then dice.

For the beets: Rinse, peel the outside layer, and dice.

Roast both items, in separate dishes, at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour. If you're cooking the chicken yourself, you can do all three of these together at once.

3. Combine all ingredients together in large bowl and enjoy!

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