Chicken Tikka, Lentil and Spinach Salad

If you associate salads with a lack of flavor, this recipe will knock you for six. In reality, it is about as far removed from a salad as a meal can be while still being called a salad. I’m no salad fan but this is one of my lunchtime staples – that’s the greatest endorsement I can give it.

Jamie Oliver provided the original inspiration for this recipe, but I have taken his creation and drastically simplified it. What’s left is meal with a depth of flavor that defies its simplicity.

Ingredients

Serves 2 / takes ~15 mins

  • 2 breasts chicken, sliced
  • 2 tsp tikka paste
  • Splash of oil (I recommend rapeseed)
  • 6 chestnut mushrooms, quartered
  • 4 spring onions or 1 small/medium white onion
  • 1 red chilli, chopped (and de-seeded if you’re not a fan of spicy food)
  • 1 heaped tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • ½ 400g tin green lentils in water, drained
  • A splodge of tomato puree
  • A splash of red wine vinegar
  • A handful of fresh coriander, chopped
  • Enough baby spinach to cover two plates
  • A liberal crumbling of feta cheese for each plate
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the sauce:

  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 3 tbsp natural yoghurt
  • 1 heaped tsp mango chutney
  • 1 tsp turmeric

Throw the chicken into a frying pan over a medium heat with the oil and tikka paste. Stir to combine and cook for 2-3 mins.

While the chicken is cooking, chop the onion and chili and throw them in when you’re done.

Throw all of the other ingredients (minus the sauce, spinach and feta) into the pan and stir to combine. Cook for 4-5 minutes.

While that’s going on, stir the sauce ingredients together in a bowl.

Once the chicken is cooked through, serve on a bed of spinach. Pour the sauce over the top and finish off your masterpiece by crumbling feta over everything.