I am very lucky that this man of mine loves (loves) salads. On any given day, I could throw some lettuce on a plate, add some oil and vinegar, and maybe a hunk of baguette, and he is a happy camper. Most times, though, I try to get a little fancier than just lettuce and bread (though, it's definitely not difficult to improve on such meager offerings).
This Lemon-Herb rub is from Everyday Food's Great Food Fast, and is lovely and light, with a little bite of acidity from the lemon, and earthiness from the bay leaves. For this particular salad, I also roasted up some potatoes (fun little purple ones that I found!), and green beans, then made the salad dressing by deglazing the pan after I cooked the chicken. I'll get to all that.
If you want to make this exact salad, preheat your oven to 350, and place potatoes and green beans on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper; place in the oven. Cook these while you do the rest of the stuff for the salad.
To make the lemon-herb rub, you'll need 1 tbsp. tarragon, 1 tbsp. grated lemon zest, 4 crumbled bay leaves, 3 minced cloves of garlic, 1.5 tsp. coarse salt, ground pepper to taste, and 3 tsp. olive oil. Mix it all up!
Rub the mixture onto some chicken breasts, then let them sit for a couple minutes to soak in all the juicy goodness.
While the chicken breasts are sitting, heat some olive oil (or coconut oil, if you prefer) in a skillet over medium-high heat. You'll want the pan good and hot before you add the chicken, so that it gets lovely and brown. Cook the chicken for a couple minutes on each side, to get that brown goodness, then lower the temperature and cover the pan to continue cooking.
While the chicken finishes up cooking, cut up your lettuce. Remove the chicken from the pan, and get excited about all that good fond left at the bottom of the pan. (Bet you didn't know that the little brown bits of food left in the pan after cooking were called "fond". This is a very educational post.) Remove the pan from heat. I added a bit of extra olive oil, some vinegar, lemon juice, and a smidge of Dijon mustard to the pan and swirled it all around. Let that just sit.
Slice up the chicken, remove the roasted veggies from the oven, and pile it all up on the lettuce. Add the dressing from the pan, and you are all set!
Now, the Lemon-Herb Rub can be used for a lot of other meats, too; Everyday Food recommends "leaner foods such as turkey...and flaky white fish (such as halibut, cod, or snapper)". Let me know if you try it/have tried it on something else--I would love to hear about it!