Chicken Salad with Zucchini, Lemon and Pine Nuts

Photo: © Tina Rupp

Armand Arnal uses ingredients from his restaurant's enormous organic garden to create seasonal Provençal dishes like this salad of chicken tossed with pine nuts and lemon-marinated zucchini.

Yield: 4
Recipe from Food & Wine

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Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup dried currants
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon, plus juice of 2 lemons
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 medium zucchini cut into 3-by-1/2-inch sticks (2 pounds)
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 2 cups lightly packed baby arugula leaves
  • 1 1-inch piece preserved lemon, peel only slivered optional

Preparation

  1. In a small bowl, cover the currants with hot water and let stand until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain.
  2. In a large nonreactive bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of the olive oil with the garlic, cumin, lemon zest, half of the lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Add the zucchini and currants and toss to coat. Let stand at room temperature for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large, shallow glass or ceramic dish, combine the minced shallot with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and the remaining lemon juice. Add the chicken breast halves, turning to coat thoroughly with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour, turning a few times.
  4. In a small skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat, tossing a few times, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate and let cool.
  5. Remove the chicken breast halves from the marinade, scraping off the shallot. Slice the chicken on the bias 1 1/2 inches thick and season with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the chicken slices and cook over moderately high heat, turning a few times, until lightly browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes.
  6. Transfer the chicken to a large, shallow serving bowl and let cool slightly. Add the marinated zucchini and currants, toasted pine nuts, arugula and preserved lemon and toss lightly. Serve right away.
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