Saturday, August 1, 2009

Obsessive Indulgence Salad

Jesse lined up the soda cans along the edge of the chair and counted them "One coke, one mountain dew, one Dr. pepper, one mellow yellow, one coke, one.." Christina's brother Jesse is still obsessed with a soda commercial that he once saw in 1982, when he lived in a brick house in Winona, MN. It seems he is in a constant state of obsession, although possibly no more so than anybody else (Christina says he just doesn't hide his obsessions like the rest of us).

"Jesse, could you please keep your voice down" Christina looked up from the little packet of instructions she was reading, and re-reading. She turned the booklet over and over and over again in her hands. "This just doesn't make any sense.." she said. She went back to the first page and began driving her eyes over the first few paragraphs again, racking up mileage on them.

Meanwhile, our gray and white cat dove head first into the shopping bags sitting in front of the apartment door. His ears tucked back when he jumped, giving him the appearance of a dolphin, or a flying squirrel. Nothing makes Eugene happier than a shopping bag.
I stood in the kitchen watching the scene. Our home was full of life. Everybody was had exactly what they wanted. The crisper was stocked with fresh produce.

The thunderous sound of cat landing in brown paper, the rustling of folded instructions, and the sound of Jesse, who now whispered, "one coke, one Dr. pepper, one mountain dew...", our house was a symphony of obsessive indulgence. I played my knife on the chopping board from the kitchen, in the key of cucumbers.

The dressing:
mix together 1 Tbsp diced red onion, 3 Tbsp vegetable oil, 2 Tbsp olive oil, 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp honey, 1 tsp thyme, salt and pepper.

The Salad: Rinse and dice 1 small head green leaf lettuce. Add some sliced cherry tomatoes, 3 mini cucumbers and some cauliflower. Add 1-2 cups diced purple cabbage. Cook 4 chicken breast tenders (smaller than chicken breasts), or 1 chicken breast (heat some oil until it is really hot, brown the chicken and then remove from heat and cover while you prepare the rest of the salad. Check it to make sure it is cooked through before dicing and adding to the salad). Garnish with feta cheese.

Christina's vote: "A party favorite"

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