Here’s something some of you new readers may not know about me: I love to cook. LOVE LOVE LOVE. I don’t post a ton of recipes on here anymore though, because I’m usually too wrapped up in the actual process to write down what the hell I’m doing. But when I do, it’s really fun and I enjoy seeing it come together on paper (or on a computer screen). A few weeks ago, I was mailed a salad recipe kit from Redpack tomatoes. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about…you’ve all seen the cans in your local supermarket. I buy their tomato sauce, tomato paste, diced tomatoes and what not, but it’s usually strictly for SAUCE recipes. I didn’t know Redpack could DO anything else. Well guess what? They can!
I will admit that upon receiving the kit, I wasn’t all too impressed with the recipes included. I thought some of the salad combos sounded odd and the fact that they wanted me to use canned tomatoes in a salad had me snootily thinking, “wait, really??” Again, I dont know what else I should have expected (it’s a CANNED brand), but I was having a dinner party, so I thought it was a good time to try one out. I picked one of the weirdest ones and threw caution to the wind: Chicken Blueberry Chopped Salad. Here we go…
I drained the tomatoes (petite diced) and let them chill in the fridge a bit. Something about wet, soggy tomatoes made me sad inside so I thought throwing them in the fridge would help. I followed the rest of the recipe exactly, except for the corn. Couldn’t find good corn so I left it out. The other ingredients were right up my alley though: grilled chicken, bacon, feta, avocado…mmm. Only thing I couldn’t wrap my head around was the blueberries. But again, along with caution, I tossed them in with the diced tomatoes, mixed it around a bit and drizzled with a nice raspberry vinaigrette…and voila! It. Was. Delicious!!
Maybe it was the bacon? Maybe it was the feta? Honestly, using grape, cherry, or sliced normal tomatoes would have thrown it off. Now that I have used canned petite diced tomatoes in a salad, I am 100% going to use them again. The texture is softer, so it blends really nicely with the rest of the ingredients, and the taste is milder too so it’s not overpowering. Everyone at the table enjoyed it too, and they were just as surprised as I was. Kudos, Redpack! You are quirky, and I like it. Recipe below!
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Chicken Blueberry Chopped Salad
Makes 6 Servings – Prep time: 25 mins
1 head butter lettuce, chopped
2 ears grilled fresh corn, cut off cob or 1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1 cup chopped cooked chicken
1 avocado, chopped
2/3 cup fresh blueberries
1 (28 ounce) can Redpack Petite Diced Tomatoes or 2 (14.5 ounce) cans Redpack Petite Diced Tomatoes
2 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup Raspberry vinaigrette light
1. In a large salad bowl, combine lettuce, corn, chicken, avocado, blueberries, Redpack tomatoes, bacon and cheese. Sprinkle with salt and black pepper then toss thoroughly.
2. Pour dressing over salad, and then toss again. Serve with tortilla chips.