I am writing this post having just washed the sand off my feet from a beach birthday party. Its been in the 80s here in Carlsbad so teaming up with Lulu the Baker for Summer in September this week has not only tasted like sweet, fresh summer but felt like sunny summer as well!
September has always been one of my favorite months. Its still gorgeous outside, the tourists are gone (not that we don’t love you!) and you can begin to get excited for the holidays, without having to stress about the holidays. So while other bloggers will shower you with fall recipes in September, to me, its like putting Christmas displays up in August, I just can’t do it. I just can’t post pumpkin cupcakes (even if they are the most delicious pumpkin cupcakes you have ever tasted) when I still have sand in between my toes.
Although I might shower you with a few more “summery” recipes this September, I promise when Fall really comes (well it never really comes in San Diego), I’ll be filling your tables with tasty soups and pumpkins galore, but for now, I hope you still feel like tasting summer just a little bit longer, especially when it tastes like Crispy Coconut Cashew Chicken Tenders.
I made my Crispy Coconut Cashew Chicken Tenders with Honey Mango Dip with this exact salad in mind. Chicken crusted in cashews, coconut and panko spiced with cumin, cayenne, garlic and onion and sweetened with the coconut and brown sugar. The perfect blend of sweet and spice, crunchy outside, tender inside. I need to make more recipes featuring this chicken because it is simply irresistible!
This crispy coconut cashew chicken lays on a throne of pineapple, mangoes, cucumbers, lettuce, green onion and red bell peppers and then topped with Pineapple Ginger Vinaigrette comprised of fresh pineapple, fresh ginger, garlic, honey, apple cider vinegar, oil and paprika – truly a dressing to live for!
Its sweet and tangy with a little attitude. This dressing should have its very own post. If you don’t want to make the whole salad, make this dressing!
But really, you should also make this salad of sweet fruit, crunchy vegetables, crispy chicken and heavenly vinaigrette. Make it while its still summer in September so you won’t have to wait for a whole year to go by. Because waiting is not fun.
Kiwi (my French bulldog) understands.
Waiting for it…waiting for it…
Finally Crispy Coconut Cashew Chicken Tropical Salad with Pineapple Ginger Vinaigrette! Well, she got a mango anyway. She knows a good thing when she smells one. This salad is packed with everything I love from the chicken, to the dressing, to fresh fruit to the crunch of the salad itself. Layers of texture, layers of flavor. So satisfyingly healthy, satisfyingly delicious, satisfyingly summer.
If there ever was summer on a plate, here it is…
- 1/2 - 1 recipe Cashew Coconut Crusted Chicken*
Tangy Pineapple Ginger Vinaigrette
- 1 cup fresh pineapple, chopped from 1 whole pineapple
- 1/4 cup honey
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 clove garlic, peeled
- 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
- Salt and pepper to taste (optional)
- 1 head romaine lettuce
- 5 green onions, chopped
- 1 large cucumber, chopped
- 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
- Remaining pineapple not used in vinaigrette, chopped
- 1 large mango, chopped
- 1 avocado, chopped (optional)
- Prepare Crispy Cashew Coconut Crusted Chicken according to recipe. Cut into strips when slightly cooled.
- Place all of the Pineapple Vinaigrette ingredients in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. Taste and add additional honey, paprika, salt and pepper if desired, keeping in mind the fruit will be sweet. (I add a little more paprika for a kick)
- Toss all the salad ingredients together or toss vegetables then add pineapple, mango and avocado to individual servings if you know there will be some left (so you can save separately). Drizzle individual servings with dressing (you don't need a lot). Enjoy!
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