Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Pesto Chicken Caesar Salad and Puppies

Last Spring when I was wallowing in my self pitty and feeling sorry for myself that my twin daughters were leaving me (in a year) to graduate high school and go off to some unknown place(s) husband did everything he could to console me.

He realized that my "little girls" would be leaving and I would be sad and home alone with 3 boys (my husband and 2 male dogs).  He decided that I would need another little girl to get me through this empty nest transition.  Out of the blue, we heard about a litter of Labrador puppys that had just been born and would be ready for adoption in late Summer.

We went for "the visit"...Strike 1.  We found out she was born on our wedding anniversary...Strike 2. She curled up in our arms and started giving us the sweet puppy breath kisses on our cheeks...Strike 3.  You're done...SOLD!

I have yet to meet one person who can go on "the visit", cuddle a ball of soft, fuzzy fur, put the puppy back in the litter and say "no thanks, not interested" and walk that even possible?  Not in our world...not ever in our world!

Her name is Brinkley Grace...Brinkley from Tom Hanks' dog in the movie "You've Got Mail" and Grace (because we were wishful thinking)...honestly I don't know what we were thinking.  We have either gotten too old to raise a puppy or this child is like no other Labrador out there.  All I can say is she's lucky she's so cute and still gives sweet kisses...otherwise she'd be out.

Her latest venture was discovering the family workout area in our basement.  She tried to steal my daughter's punching bag gloves and destroy them in the backyard.  Then she jumped on, punched a hole with her giant 10-month old teeth in my husband's exercise ball and then tried to shred their yoga mat.  All of this takes place in about 3.7 seconds while I am on my computer.  I no sooner get that under control, sort of and I hear her tossing the 5 pound weights down the steps, which by the way is super loud at 11:30 at night.  So cute...right??!!

This salad ended up being one of those mid-week refrigerator cleaning dinners.  I have no fancy measurements or culinary was basic, easy and perfect for a night of chasing the new puppy.

Pesto Chicken Caesar Salad

prepared Pesto sauce
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
8 ounces button mushrooms, cleaned, sliced
1 head romaine lettuce
bottled Caesar dressing (your favorite brand)
shredded Parmesan cheese
4 cooked slices bacon, crumbled

Grill chicken breasts on outdoor grill or on stovetop in grill pan.  Right before chicken is cooked through, "shmear" a spoonful of pesto sauce on each side of chicken breasts and give a quick sear. Set aside and cover to let juices redistribute.

While chicken is grilling, saute mushrooms in a little butter and garlic salt.  When mushrooms are done, set aside and cut cooked chicken into bite size cubes.

In a large salad bowl add the romaine lettuce, Parmesan cheese, bacon crumbles, sauteed mushrooms and chicken breasts. Toss with Caesar dressing.

One Year Ago: Bunny Bark
Two Years Ago: Pear Salad
Three Years Ago: Honey Ham Biscuits

This is when we love Brinkley the most... ;)

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