Asparagus is a spring vegetable and you get the best tasting asparagus then. That’s why eating foods that are in season is recommended as they are more nutrient dense than when produced off-season!
I usually only bake asparagus. I like to cut the thick stems off a couple inches from the bottom and then spread them in a baking tray tossed with some garlic powder and salt and a drizzle of olive oil. Bake at 400 F for 12 mins and you get a perfect side dish that my family enjoys! This recipe was something I learnt long ago when I was a grad student from one of my american classmates. I wasn’t familiar cooking asparagus then as we didn’t have that in India and so her recipe came in very handy for me at that time and I stuck to it!
Last month, I attended a luncheon organized by the non-profit that I am a member of and the menu included Chicken and asparagus salad. That was when I first tasted blanched asparagus. It tasted wonderful and it still had a crunch to it. I thought it went very well with the grilled chicken. The salad came with a creamy dairy based mustard dressing that I avoided. However, I was so inspired by this salad that I had to create my own AIP version with a creamy dressing and all!
The creamy dressing wasn’t too hard to do since I just took Bon Aipetit’s AIP mayonnaise recipe and added a couple flavors to it! Hope you enjoy this recipe. This is an easy recipe for a quick salad for lunch or for dinner!
What are the ingredients for this salad?
- Chicken (thighs or breasts)
- Other vegetables: I like to add Red Cabbage and Baby Spinach as they create a nice visual interest with the vibrant colors but you can add any other vegetables too like shredded carrots, celery etc.
- Homemade Dairy free and Egg free Mayo dressing – I make a homemade dressing using Bonaipetit’s AIP Mayo recipe. But you can use a readymade AIP or Paleo dressing too.
- 1 lb of boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts, thawed to room temperature
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp ground black pepper (Omit for AIP)
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Avocado oil or coconut oil for pan frying
- ½ a lb of asparagus
- 1 cup red cabbage, shredded
- 2 cups baby spinach leaves
- ½ cup AIP Mayo (recipe from Bonaipetit.com - see link below in Notes)
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp ground mustard (Omit for AIP)
- In a small mixing bowl add the chicken and all the spices and the oil. Using your hands coat the chicken pieces well with all the spices.
- Heat a large stainless steel or cast iron frying pan. When hot, add about 2 tbsps of the oil and then place the chicken pieces on the pan. Let cook on medium heat for about 5 mins on one side. Then flip the pieces (they should be golden brown on the bottom) and cook for about 4 mins on the other side. Turn heat off and transfer the chicken pieces onto a serving dish and cover with Al foil. Keep aside.
- Trim the broad fibrous ends of the asparagus off (about 2 inches from the bottom).
- Heat a large stockpot filled upto ¾ th with water. When the water begins to boil, add about a tsp of sea salt to the water and add the asparagus into the water. Let cook for about 4 mins.
- Meanwhile, get an ice bath ready by adding lots of ice to a large mixing bowl.
- Drain the cooked asparagus into a strainer and then quickly using tongs drop the asparagus into the cooling water bath so that it retains its color and texture.
- Get a large salad tray or bowl and arrange the rest of the vegetables on it.
- When the asparagus is sufficiently cooled off to handle, chop them into about ½ inch long pieces. Add them into the salad tray/bowl.
- Take the chicken and slice into ½ inch thick pieces. Add the chicken pieces into the salad.
- Mix all salad dressing ingredients into a small cup or a bowl and stir to mix well.
- When ready to serve the salad, pour the dressing all over the salad. Serve warm. This recipe makes two servings of salad.
Other Chicken Salad recipes from my website: