When I was growing up we had an upstairs bathroom that was hideous, the kind that company never sees. A rusty shower, metallic blue wallpaper and a particle board sink cabinet that was held on by one hinge. When it came time for the bathroom’s beautiful makeover, everyone was happy to see it go but me. I was weirdly sad in a nostalgic kind of way. I kept pieces of the ugly wallpaper. I may have also taken pictures of every part of the room including the light switches and the toilet… I have trouble saying goodbye to things and I am not a big fan of change.
But change is a part of life, bathrooms and all. Outside in my garden there is a lot of change. It’s time of year when my lilacs have gone and my cold weather crops are tired of the heat June brings. I have tried my hardest to keep them going but they are spent. They’re dying and it’s time for me to let them to go. Out with the spinach, kale and escarole and in with the tomatoes, string beans and cucumbers. Saying goodbye is hard. Change is good. Give your spring spinach an honorable last hoorah.
Balsamic Chicken and Spinach Salad with Walnuts and Cranberries
www.lessonsinfood.wordpress.com original recipe
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast
- 2 TBL olive oil
- 2 TBL honey
- 3 TBL balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper
- 1 pound fresh spinach leaves, washed throughly
- 1/2 cup craisins
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
- 3-5 TBL balsamic glaze ( available commercially or can be homemade by simmering balsamic vinegar until its reduced by half)
- olive oil
Combine the chicken with the oil, honey, balsamic and salt and pepper in a bowl. In a heavy bottom skillet or in a grill pan, cook chicken until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees and the vinegar has caramelized.
Move chicken to a cutting board and slice. Toss spinach leaves with walnuts and craisins. Top with chicken. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or room temperature.