Cajun Chicken and Butternut Salad!

Cajun Chicken and Butternut Salad!

(For the best tender chicken; put your chicken breasts and milk in a large bowl, cover with cling film, place in the fridge and soak the chicken overnight.)

Cajun Chicken:
3 teaspoons of salt
2 teaspoons of ground black pepper
3 teaspoons of garlic powder
3 teaspoons of onion powder
1½ teaspoons of Cayenne pepper
3 teaspoons of paprika
2 teaspoons of dried thyme
1 teaspoon of dried oregano
4 chicken breasts
1-2 cups of milk (if soaking the chicken overnight)

Butternut, Arugula and Quinoa Salad:
400 g butternut squash, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup dry quinoa
2 cups arugula
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup chopped pecans

Maple Vinaigrette:
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1-1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Dash of sea salt
Freshly ground pepper


Method:
Mix the Cajun Chicken ingredients in a bowl to make your Cajun spice mix.

Put a baking tray in the oven and then pre-heat to 200 degrees Celsius. It is important that you pre-heat the tray so that it is hot and ready for the chicken.

Transfer your chicken breasts to a plate or board, then sprinkle about a teaspoon of the Cajun spice mix over each chicken breast. Rub the spice mix all over the meat.

Take the baking tray out of the oven then carefully line with baking paper. Place the chicken breasts on the hot baking tray meaty side up and cook for 20 min. If they are really large chicken breasts cook them for an extra 2-3 min. Toss diced butternut squash with olive oil and spread it out on the baking sheet. Roast for 20 min, turning the squash over once after 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool slightly.

While the squash roasts, add quinoa and 2 cups of water to a small saucepan. Bring the water to a boil, then turn the heat down to low, cover with a lid, and simmer for 15 min. Remove the lid, fluff with a fork, and let cool slightly.

Whisk together the vinaigrette while the squash and quinoa cook. When the squash and quinoa have cooled a bit, mix them together. Add the cranberries and pecans. Pour on the vinaigrette and stir well. Add the arugula just before serving. 


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