Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Chop Chop, Baby!

Many, many years ago, when my husband Gary was working for a Computer Software company in Newport Beach, he 'discovered' this new resturant across the street from his office. It was called 'California Pizza Kitchen', and he raved about it CONSTANTLY. Seriously. I think the during the years he worked in Newport, he ate at CPK an average of 3 times a month for lunch! Funny thing, the only thing he would order (and still does) was 1. the Thai BBQ Chicken Pizza, and 2. the Chopped Salad. He would regularly lament that he would love to eat the Chopped Salad at home, if I could find a recipe.  {sigh,...poor Dad}}

Now, this was about 16 yrs ago, looooooong before *I* discoved the Internet, and even longer before that wonder of 'Google'. Fast forward to about 5 yrs ago. Another visit to CPK (where he STILL orders the same 2 items!), and I came home determined to re-create that dang Chopped Salad. So...turn on computer, bring up Google, enter 'CPK Chopped Salad Recipe' and Viola! (that is Whaa-laa, lol) I FOUND IT !! At first glance, it seemed a bit daunting,...but upon closer inspection, realized the half the ingredients were for the dresssing, and all items in my cupboard. Yeah!

A few days later, I made the Salad for the first time....SUCCESS!! I actually tasted BETTER that the CPK version...(maybe because it was sooooo much cheaper doing it myself) ! We have this salad regularly in the warmer months, along with sourdough rolls. Yum Yum !
A couple of notes - 1. Don't add the tomatoes to the Salad, serve them on the side. This way, if there is leftover salad, you can bag it up for a day or two and it won't get soggy.
2. Feel free to change the amounts of lettuce, meats, and cheese to your own taste. As it is, this makes a HUGE bowl of salad, enough for our family of 8 for dinner. You might not want that much.
3. At least DOUBLE the dressing recipe. One recipe of dressing is not enough for all this salad. Don't change the dressing recipe...it is pretty much perfect as is. It is also VERY strong, and zesty!

All that said, here is the recipe, copied from RecipeZaar. I'm also including the link, if you want to print it from the site.  http://www.recipezaar.com/recipe/California-Pizza-Kitchen-Chopped-Salad-112979


1 teaspoon garlic, minced
2 teaspoons shallots, minced
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 1/3 cups olive oil, mild flavored
3 tablespoons parmesan cheese, grated

1/2 head iceberg lettuce, chopped into 1/8 inch wide strips
1/2 head romaine lettuce, chopped into 1/8 inch wide strips
12 leaves basil, chopped into fine strips
3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 cup garbanzo beans
4 cups tomatoes, seeded and diced
3 cups turkey breast, diced (i'm trying this is grilled chicken breast)
1/2 cup salami, cut into thin strips
2 tablespoons scallions, chopped


For salad, toss together the ingredients in a large bowl and chill in your refrigerator.
For dressing, whisk together ingredients in a small bowl and chill for an hour.
Just before serving, toss dressing with salad and serve on small individual plates.
Can serve 4 for a main dish or 8 for small side salads.


Anonymous said...

Ooooh! It sounds soooo good! Thanks for posting Linda! It doesn't surprise me at all that your version was better! :)
Love, Barb

Sarah Hull said...


Jessica said...

"Voila". The way you spelled it is the instrument Brigham Welsh plays ;-)

Linda said...

AHHh, Voila! I wish I knew how to make the accent mark. And Jessica,...it's Welch,not Welsh...lol! (Welsh is what "Jones" is...)