Grilled Romaine and Watermelon Salad with Jerk Chicken

With the festivities of last month long gone and Labor Day Weekend over, it's starting to feel like summer is slowly starting to fade away. Not thanks to the weather, it's going to be 100 degrees today, but the feeling is there. In the meantime, I'm trying to soak up as much of summer as I can before it's gone and the holidays arrive.

I started with this salad over the weekend.

Nothing says summer more than grilling and watermelon, so I decided to combine the two, since, you know, it's still summer.

So there would be grilled watermelon, what else? Chicken. duh. Make it a salad? good thinking, why not grill some romaine? Avocado? always.  And you know the rest- sweet cherry tomatoes, tangy feta cheese and balsamic vinaigrette. It's the perfect combination of sweet, savory, tangy and spicy all in one FRESH and HEALTHY salad.

So what else has been going on?

Well, my toddler has had croup TWICE in just under a month. Nothing says end of summer like a constantly sick child.

I am convinced someone stole my stinky running shoes from my car Sunday night. They literally disappeared. They were a pretty cool blue color, so I get it, but my socks were missing too (gross). Oh well, perfect excuse to get these 

Usually when I get cravings, it's for something like pizza or chocolate cake. This weekend all I wanted was cheese and crackers, specifically brie. I highly recommend just sitting down with a plate of cheese and crackers (and wine)- it may not be good for the heart, but it's good for the soul.

I bribe my toddler with trips to Home Depot for good behavior at the gym daycare. Who needs $100 tickets to Disneyland when you have an aisle of lawn equipment that you can look at for free?

Grilled Romaine and Watermelon Salad with Chicken

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 20 minutes / Total Time: 35-40 minutes
Yield: 2 large salads

Ingredients

For the Chicken:
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
salt + pepper
1 Tablespoon jerk seasoning/marinade (this is my fav!!)

For the Romaine:
3 Romaine hearts
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon each fresh chopped oregano, thyme and rosemary (or 1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs)
salt + pepper

For the Salad:
Seedless watermelon cut into 1-inch thick pieces (approximately 6 pieces)
Olive oil
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 large, ripe avocado
Feta cheese, for topping

Instructions

  1. Prepare your grill for high direct heat. Meanwhile, prepare chicken breasts by tossing chicken, salt, pepper and jerk marinade in a large ziplock bag. Allow up to 12 hours to marinate in the refrigerate or set aside until grill is hot.

  2. In a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, fresh herbs and salt and pepper. Gently brush vinaigrette over your prepared romaine hearts. Set aside and lightly brush watermelon slices with olive oil.

  3. Carefully place everything on the grill starting with the chicken and ending the with romaine hearts. After a minute or so, flip the chicken and rotate the lettuce. After another minute or so, rotate the lettuce again and flip the watermelon. Reduce heat to medium low and continue to cook. The romaine hearts will finish first, followed by the watermelon, and finally, the chicken. Cook the chicken until completely cooked through.

  4. In a large bowl or plate, serve the grilled romaine, watermelon and chicken with cherry tomatoes, avocado and tangy feta cheese. Drizzle was balsamic vinaigrette, if desired.

Enjoy!

*Note- The watermelon and lettuce are best served immediately.

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