One Friday afternoon several years ago, a friend invited me and another mutual friend to lunch at her home. It was billed as a quick meal and it would be fair to say that no one anticipated that it was the beginning of something important. We sat down for lunch and once the prosecco started flowing, so did the words. What started out as a casual lunch turned into a no holds barred conversation about life, motherhood and marriage. Barriers came down, bonds were formed and we made a “What happens in Vegas…” pact.
Later, we discussed the fact that despite the constant struggle (and stress) to achieve the right balance between our careers and family lives, we were all missing the girlfriend factor. To me, it is the opportunity to vent, share, ask questions and get feedback. The value of spending time with my girlfriends is the best free therapy in the world. That day, over a simple meal, Ladies’ Lunch was born. It continues to be one of the occasions that is a priority in my life. All you need is a delicious lunch and some bubbly to get started. My “go to” meal that I like preparing whenever I host is Cobb Salad. It never fails to be a crowd pleaser and I love the fact that something this divine can be whipped together in 30 minutes. Because Cobb Salad contains so many ingredients, I don’t feel the need to serve anything else with it except warm bread and butter. And icy cold prosecco.
Cobb Salad Lunch
One package of Bell & Evans Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts (3-4 breasts), seasoned with salt and pepper
One half a package of bacon (cut the bacon into 1″ strips)
One package of baby lettuces (washed and dried)
Two perfectly ripe avocados (cut into slices)
One small container plum tomatoes (wash and dried)
Six hard-boiled eggs (peeled and halved)
Salad Dressing of your choice
If possible, allow the chicken and bacon to sit at room temperature for an hour before you begin cooking them, it speeds the cooking time and I think makes the flavor more intense.
Preheat a skillet to medium heat and cook the bacon, remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and transfer to a paper-towel covered plate
Leaving the bacon oil in the skillet, saute the chicken breasts in the oil (about 10 minutes per side) until golden brown
While the chicken is cooking, prepare the rest of the salad. You can use one large plate, or individually plate each meal.
As soon as the chicken is done, transfer to a chopping board and cover with aluminum foil for about 5 minutes to let is rest (resting allows all the juices to remain inside the chicken to keep it moist. If you slice chicken that is hot off the skillet all the juices will run out). After 5 minutes, slice the chicken, add it to the plate and top with the bacon. Serve immediately.
Cobb Salad Lunch, enjoy!
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