The Afternoon Task

So I've taken up cooking again. Yes, you probably thought from my absence that husband and children were being neglected nutritionally. That's pretty much true, except that Bobby makes some killer dinners.

New goal: cook exciting, well rounded dinners. Plan: set aside entire afternoon to prep and cook dinner with my sous chef. That way, with all of the babies to feed and soothe, I should eventually still have dinner ready by the breaking point, dinnertime.

Caroline and I treated the cutting, shredding, juicing, and sauteing of this Zucchini and Chicken Salad as if we were on a cooking show--a very snooty cooking show, that is.

Served with rice, it is a wonderful crispy, slightly tangy summer dish. Great for a quick meal if you already have zucchini on hand.

Zucchini and Chicken Salad


Serves 4

  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 1/4 pounds zucchini, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 bunch (about 8 ounces) spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced (I used Vidalia onion, slightly sauteed)
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint ( I omitted, and am glad I did)


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup oil and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper. Add zucchini; toss to coat, and let marinate while cooking chicken.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet, heat remaining tablespoon oil over medium. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Cook chicken until golden brown and opaque throughout, about 7 minutes per side.
  3. Toss chicken with zucchini mixture, spinach, onion, pecans, Parmesan, and mint. Serve.

Recipe compliments Martha Stewart's Everyday Food Cookbook