Mediterranean Diet Recipes: Entree Salads
Although the entree salad is more popular in the United States and Canada, you can still create a Mediterranean–inspired meal by combining fresh produce with protein sources like salmon or chicken. Entree salads are also a great summer meal for celebrating the foods that are in season.
Grilled Salmon with Caramelized Onions over Mixed Greens
Prep time: 15 minutes, plus marinating time
Cook time: 40 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
1 tablespoon plus 1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
2 large sweet or yellow onions, sliced thinly
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/4 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
1 pound salmon filet
4 cups romaine lettuce
4 cups red leaf lettuce
1/4 cup walnuts or almonds, chopped
In a heavy skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter over medium-high heat.
Add the onions and sauté over medium-high heat until slightly soft and caramelized, being careful not to fully brown, for 3 minutes, tossing with tongs to separate pieces and evenly coat with oil mixture.
Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue sautéing uncovered for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden.
Mix the dill, garlic, lemon zest and juice, remaining olive oil, and melted butter and season with the sea salt to taste.
Place all but 1/4 cup of the dressing into another bowl and use the 1/4 cup to brush both sides of the salmon; marinate for 10 minutes. Discard this portion of the dressing.
Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Grill the salmon on each side for 4 minutes or until it achieves the desired doneness.
In a large mixing bowl, lightly toss the greens with the reserved dressing and plate on four dinner plates.
Divide the caramelized onions evenly among the four plates.
Cut the salmon into four equal pieces and plate them over the onions; sprinkle with the chopped walnuts and serve hot.
Char-Grilled Chicken with Feta over Mixed Greens
Prep time: 40 minutes, plus marinating time
Cook time: 20 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Four 4- to 6-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 teaspoons yellow mustard
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon fennel seed
1/4 teaspoon coriander
2 teaspoons honey
8 cups mixed salad greens
2 Roma tomatoes
16 black olives
4 ounces feta, crumbled
Place the chicken breasts in a 9-x-11-inch glass baking dish.
In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, garlic, mustard, oregano, fennel seed, coriander, and honey.
Pour 1 cup of the dressing over the chicken and coat each breast. Marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to 4 hours. Discard this portion of the dressing.
Divide the mixed greens among four plates.
Halve each tomato and cut it into 1/2-inch wedges. Divide the tomatoes, olives, and feta evenly among the plates.
Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and discard the marinade.
Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Grill the chicken for 10 minutes on each side or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
Allow the chicken to rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes prior to slicing.
Slice each chicken breast on an angle in 1/2-inch-thick slices. Fan one breast over each salad.
Drizzle 1 to 2 tablespoons of the remaining dressing over each salad and serve.
Per serving: Calories 290 (From Fat 92); Fat 10g (Saturated 4g); Cholesterol 126mg; Sodium 576mg; Carbohydrate 7g (Dietary Fiber 1g); Protein 41g.
Seared Tuna with Lemon Dill Sauce over Mixed Greens
Prep time: 25 minutes, plus marinating time
Cook time: 25 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
8 small new potatoes
1/2 pound green beans, cleaned, with stems and ends removed
Zest and juice of 2 lemons
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon plus 2 tablespoons dill, chopped
1/4 cup onion, minced, divided
Salt and pepper to taste
1 pound 1-inch-thick tuna steaks
6 cups green leaf or red leaf lettuce, washed and torn
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
1 carrot, grated
Nonstick cooking spray (optional)
2 tablespoons capers
In a medium saucepan, cover the potatoes with cold water.
Bring to a boil over high heat and cover; reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender. Strain the potatoes in a colander and run under cold water to halt the cooking. Set aside.
In the same saucepan, boil 3 cups of water and add the green beans; boil for 3 minutes.
Strain the beans in a colander and run under cold water for 1 minute. Set aside.
In a shallow dish, combine the lemon zest, 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice, the parsley, garlic, 1 tablespoon of the dill, and 2 tablespoons of the onion. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the tuna to the marinade from Step 3 and coat on both sides.
Allow the tuna to marinate for at least 10 minutes while you assemble your salad.
Place the lettuce in a large salad bowl and layer with the green beans, whole potatoes, and carrots.
Spray a cast-iron grill pan with nonstick cooking spray (if desired) and heat it over medium-high heat.
Sear the tuna for 4 minutes on each side or until it reaches the desired doneness.
Place the tuna on a cutting board. In a shallow bowl, whisk the remaining lemon juice, olive oil, dill, and onion and the capers.
Whisk and pour the dressing over the salad. Slice the tuna steaks into 1/2-inch slices and serve over the salad mixture.
Per serving: Calories 397 (From Fat 136); Fat 15g (Saturated 2g); Cholesterol 51mg; Sodium 213mg; Carbohydrate 34g (Dietary Fiber 5g); Protein 32g.