I don’t even know what this recipe is. All I can tell you is I arrived home after an afternoon hike last week with sunkissed children, the smell of wind in our hair, and an almost obsessive need to make an open-face chef salad sandwich. I’d been mixing the ingredients together in my mind most of the ride home. Well, that and chuckling as my kids car danced to Lady Gaga. I really oughtn’t let them listen to some of those lyrics , but gol’ durned if that gal doesn’t spin a good dance beat.
I digress. We walked through the door of our home, and I had this mad craving for the leftover chicken in our fridge and the ham and the eggs I’d boiled this morning. And, I didn’t want them separate. I needed to put them all together. Slathered in buttermilk. Topped with sprouts. Served over cheese bread. See what I mean? I don’t even know what this recipe is.
But I do know, that when I put it in front of my children for dinner, the kitchen table got real silent. Not the mad sort of silent, the fork-knocking sort of silent. The kind where you hear an occasional hum as food is shoveled from plate to fork to mouth. Hummmm. Yummmm. The kids were enthralled. Which made me think, maybe this recipe was worthy of blogging.
Though, I was still a little wary of tossing this concotion up as a real recipe until my blue-eyed Jakey Boy, our youngest son, whispered over his plate, “This.is.good.” Then, a little more audibly called out to me, “Mom?”
“I love you.”
So that’s what this recipe is. It’s the sort of recipe that makes your kids and their sun-smooched cheeks, and sky-blue eyes tell you they love you.
Definitely a recipe worth blogging about.
Open Face Chef Salad Sandwich
A unique, delicious way to use up any grilled chicken you’ve got sitting in your fridge from last nights summer barbecue. And, no matter how much your family loves ranch dressing, they are going to triple their adoration for this homemade version of buttermilk ranch. Though the photo show’s my portion, over thin multigrain bread rounds, I served it to my family on Texas Toast and it was truly a revelation.
FOR THE HOMEMADE BUTTERMILK DRESSING:
1/4 c. light mayonnaise
1/2 c. buttermilk
1/4 tsp. dill weed (fresh or dried)
1/2 tsp. chives (fresh or dried)
1/2 tsp. parsley (fresh or dried)
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4-1/2 tsp. celery salt (to taste)
fresh ground pepper
FOR THE SALAD:
2-4 slices deli ham, diced
1 c. grilled chicken, diced
1 c. romaine lettuce, finely chopped
2 T. real bacon bits (optional)
3 hard boiled eggs
1/4 c. peas
1 large tomato, diced
1 c. sprouts
FOR THE SANDWICH:
4-6 Slices of Texas Toast
1 c. cheddar cheese, grated
In a blender, combine all dressing ingredients together (if using fresh herbs, feel free to toss in a little more than the recipe asks for. You really can’t mess that recipe up). Blend until well pureed. In a large bowl, combine ham, chicken, lettuce, bacon bits, the hard boiled eggs, peas and tomatoes. Pour half of the prepared buttermilk dressing over all ingredients and toss until well covered. Place slices of Texas Toast on a cookie sheet, sprinkle generously with cheddar cheese. Bake in an oven preheated to 450 degrees, just until the cheese melts. Top warm bread with heaping spoonfuls of the salad mixture. Top with sprouts, drizzle with remaining dressing. Serve with a fork & Enjoy!
What are you doing to get sunkissed this season?