Warm Spinach and Mushroom Salad with Chicken

After a solid month of transferring things from one side of town to the other, I’ve finally finished moving. (Okay, okay, I still have a SUV-sized load of things at my Maryland house, but that’s a worry for another day.) That’s right friends, I’m now a proud resident of the Upper East Side.

I’d introduce you to my humble abode, but it’s in a total state of disarray. There are more tables than we know what to do with, boxes everywhere and so. much. trash. It’s a shame, because I wanted my new kitchen to make a grand entrance on this blog. The first meal in the new apartment should have been something magnificent, spectacular — a first impression you’d never forget.

But instead, it tiptoes in, a glance here, a peek there, until we finally unpack everything and put it in its place. That’s not to say that this salad wasn’t delicious, especially on a day when I needed something light and summery to remind myself that while it may be September, fall doesn’t necessarily need to be here right now.

(It’s September! Where did the year go? Let’s not talk about this, and instead wear sundresses and pretend it’s June.)

Warm Spinach and Mushroom Salad with Chicken

-1 large shallot, sliced

– 2 cloves of garlic, sliced

– 1 10-ounce package of cremini mushrooms, washed and sliced

– 1 pound chicken breasts, diced

– salt and pepper, to taste

– 4 ounces baby spinach, washed and dried

– grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

1) Heat olive oil in a medium-sized skillet. Add the shallots and garlic and saute on low heat until browned, stirring occasionally.

2) Add the mushrooms and increase the heat to medium, adding more oil if necessary. Saute until the mushrooms begin to release some of their water, then add the chicken, salt and pepper. Cook for 7-10 minutes on medium heat, until the chicken is cooked through.

3) Arrange the spinach leaves on a plate, then top with the mushroom-chicken mixture. Finish with Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Variations: Some fresh thyme or even rosemary would be delicious here, if you have it (add it with the mushrooms). You could also brown the shallots and garlic in butter, and of course, you can always make this salad vegetarian by omitting the chicken.

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