a salad for your new year

Happy new year!!!!! I was asleep before 10.30 last night but no surprises there. Now with a new year brings new goals and one of mine is to eat better. And nothing says eating better than salad. I discovered ‘cobb salad’ in ‘Against all grain’ which is probably one of the best cookbooks I bought last year. And that’s saying something. Now while its actually a paleo cookbook and I’m not following a paleo diet, it is full of family friendly recipes. And is great if you’re gluten free, dairy free, sugar free or on a special diet.

I am still trying to eat a lot less gluten in my diet and I feel a lot better for it. I was eating way too much bread and wheat pasta in my diet, we’re talking 2 pieces of toast for breakfast, sandwich for lunch, pasta for dinner. That sort of thing. I did find that by eliminating all gluten it made it hard to eat out or that I became very sensitive to anything with gluten so I’ve taken the middle ground and try to avoid it but am not strict about it. But the benefits for elodie are huge and I can see the big difference it has made to her behaviour and concentration so if you’re thinking about gluten free for your children then I would look into it and give it a shot. We love the buontempo and san remo gluten free pastas and the kids wouldn’t know the difference with pasta in our house.

Now this salad has the usual salad subjects like lettuce, tomato, avocado and has a jar of artichokes, some roasted chicken, bacon, egg and I like red onion on the top too. Mind you not everyone is a fan of the onion. My kids don’t love salad (no point lying and telling you that they always eat salad or their vegetables!) but they do love chicken, bacon and egg so that keeps them happy.

And the adults of the house love the whole combination. I think it looks really impressive and it’s super filling which makes it a great dinner. It would also be great to take to a bbq or party and I would suggest having the components all separate and assembling once you get to where you are going

I’ve adapted this recipe to suit my large crowd and also to make my cooking quick and easy I pop the chicken and bacon in the oven and you can be left to do other things while it’s cooking. My new oven is super fast so it’s great to chuck things in the fan forced oven for 20 minutes, have your eggs cooking on the stovetop and get down to making the salad and dressing.

a little tip with the cherry tomatoes is to slice down the middle with the top of your tomato on one side rather than right near your knife. Just makes it look nice. Maybe you’re already doing that but I picked it up at cooking school when it was ‘suggested’ how I should cut my cherry tomatoes. And I’ve been doing it that way ever since.

I hope you enjoy it……I still can’t believe I’d never had cobb salad and if you need more inspiration just put cobb salad into your search on pinterest. So many recipes and photos…………..just skip the creamy dressings and make your own which is what I do. Now my recipe is gluten free and dairy free but always check your ingredients like mustard and bacon to be sure if you are serving to a celiac.

my new favourite salad
I've adapted this from the Cobb Salad in Against All Grain.
What you'll need
  • 2-4 chicken breasts (if you're feeding a big family or crowd go for 4)
  • 4-6 rashers of bacon
  • 4-6 eggs eggs (again depending on how many you're feeding)
  • 1 iceberg lettuce
  • 1 avocado
  • punnet cherry tomatoes
  • handful fresh herbs
  • small jar of artichokes, drained
  • seeded mustard
  • olive oil
  • 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper to season
  • honey for dressing
  • white wine or balsamic vinegar
  1. Cut up chicken breasts into large chunks and place in a baking dish.
  2. Add in a big tablespoon of mustard, good few tablespoons of olive oil, season and mix the chicken around in the mixture so it's evenly distributed and coating the chicken.
  3. Place in 180C degree oven for about 20 minutes and mix the chicken around a couple of times in between. You don't want your chicken too dry just cooked and still moist so don't go for the roasted look, go for the just cooked, still moist and delicious look.
  4. Place bacon rashers on a baking/cookie tray covered with baking/greaseproof paper and pop in the oven as well. This will take about 15 minutes and turn your bacon over half way through cooking.
  5. Now place eggs in water and bring to the boil. Cook your eggs as you like them, peel eggs and slice thickly. Set aside
  6. Now find a nice big platter or very large plate and scatter the lettuce (I like to slice my lettuce) over the platter. I like to scatter some fresh herbs on top of the lettuce like parsley and basil but that's optional.
  7. Wash and slice the cherry tomatoes in half and place in a line at one end of your platter.
  8. Now cube the avocado and place in another line on top of your salad leaves
  9. Drain the artichokes, roughly chop and make another row on your salad.
  10. When your chicken is done, transfer the chicken pieces to a plate to allow to cool. If you are eating the salad straight away then serve the chicken warm
  11. Slice the bacon and make a row on your salad for the bacon. I like mine next to the chicken.
  12. Place the egg pieces in a row and also the chicken in another row.
  13. Make your dressing. I grab a mug or glass and whisk together 3 parts olive oil, 1 part vinegar, tablespoon of mustard, dash of honey to sweeten, season with salt and pepper and taste. If its too bitter add a dash more honey and season to taste.
  14. Serve the dressing either on top of the salad or on the side.
  15. Enjoy.....................if you are making this for kids then I love to add a can of drained corn kernels as it's a sure way to get them to eat the salad. Well most of it.



  1. Happy New Year! Yummy recipe thanks Corrie great idea for entertaining.

  2. Lyn Lindsay says:

    Happy New Year Corrie to you and your family thanks so much for the recipe my granddaughter is coming to stay with us for a week and requires gluten free so one meal sorted sounds great and easy.

    Have a great 2014, blessings, Lyn

  3. Happy New year to everyone at your house. Thank you for a wonderful start to 2014 with a delicious recipe I will be doing today. Cheersxxxxxxx

  4. Happy new year Corrie. I’ve loved reading your blog this past year. Thank you!

    This salad looks so family friendly and yummy. One little trick I’ve learned for those days when you really do feel like a creamy dressing is to make one with yoghurt, lemon juice and a dash of Dijon mustard. Delish and still healthy. I think it would go beautifully with this fab Cobb salad.

    Looking forward to more retromummy knitting and cooking inspiration in 2014! xx

  5. That looks delicious!

  6. Yum! We decided to challenge ourselves to try 30 different salads this summer, I’m adding this to the list right now…

  7. Happy New Year Corrie – that salad looks awesome! I’m going to look into that book too, I’m trying a similar middle ground with gluten/wheat & just generally trying to eat healthier, but there’s not a great deal of variety my kids will eat & I refuse to make separate meals (separate parts yes, like you’ve mentioned here, but whole different meals, no way!).

    • good for you, it’s tricky isn’t it! do they like rice? I find risotto, sushi rice bowls and fried rice keep them happy and they love a tofu stir fry ( you could use chicken) with thick rice noodles you get in the cold section of the supermarket. They soak up the sauces are great….I think I need to share my noodle recipe as I write this comment

      happy new year and good luck, it’s worth it

  8. It’s 11:25pm and I’m in bed surfing my fav blogs, but now I’m starving and think I’ll have to make a trip to the fridge. Looks delish, x

  9. Hi, looks delicious. I have just started with Pinterest and find it a great way to keep track of receipes I find on the web. Do you have a Pinterest button that I have missed? If not do you know if I can make my own pins or could I add it as a suggestion for the future. Thanks again for sharing.

  10. Looks delicious and there’s something there for everyone’s tastes……


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