Valentine’s Day, 2010. My husband (then-boyfriend) and I were attempting to not make a huge deal out of it. And by “not trying to make a huge deal out of it,” I mean that Ross made reservations for us at one of those places where you get a five star dinner while watching a show but didn’t realize until about an hour before we were supposed to leave that the place was in San Antonio (we were in Georgetown at the time). Oops. So we ran out to dinner to a place down the road and that was that.
And I got a “Santa Fe Salad.” Funny what you remember.
Anyway, I guess it was good since this salad a part of our dinner rotation ever since. I mean, the date was good, too. Obviously. During the hard-core Paleo years, we just nixed the cheese and corn and used sliced almonds instead of tortilla strips and it was still amazing. So this is totally kosher for clean eaters. Promise.
My favorite protein to use for this salad is grilled chicken, but salmon (or any other fish) is really great, too. When entertaining, I’ve even made a side salad version…just a tiny one without the protein. As for dressing, you can use anything you want–the original had what was basically a spicy ranch–but I loveLOVElove this avocado dressing with a little cayenne on top.
Here’s a good tutorial for roasting your peppers.
- 1 head Romaine lettuce
- 1-2 lbs of grilled chicken or fish, can be hot or cold
- 2-3 roasted red bell peppers, sliced (see recommendation above)
- 2 heirloom tomatoes, diced
- 1 large red onion, sliced
- 1 (14 oz) can of corn kernels, rinsed and drained
- 2-3 avocados, pitted and sliced
- 1 c grated cheddar and jack cheese
- a few handfuls of corn tortilla chips, crushed
- dressing of choice (see recommendation above)
- Make a nice big bed of romaine in a large bowl or on individual plates. I made 5 salads with this recipe, if that helps.
- Arrange the ingredients on top of the lettuce, saving the cheese and chips for garnish.
- Dress and serve!