There is nothing like a really good salad, but making a really good salad is not as easy as it sounds which is why we all go out and pay $25 for $6 worth of ingredients. But, there is nothing better than a hearty, healthy salad (just watch the dressing calories). I have to admit I am not a huge fan of the Houstons/Hillstone/White House/Honor Bar/Bandera food chain only because I kinda feel like the staff is a bit rude and I really hate eating at 11am or 4:30pm or waiting 2 hours for a table, but I do love most of their dishes on the menu. One of my favorites is the Macho Salad at Honor Bar. It is filled with so many good things like roasted chicken, cornbread croutons, avocado, dates, goat cheese, corn… its just yummy!
So, one of the best things about this salad are the cornbread croutons. Do not let this turn you away from making this salad. They are not hard to make, I promise. I make homemade croutons almost every night because it is so easy and this is just another type of crouton. First, make a pan of cornbread or buy a pan of premade cornbread/corn muffins from the grocery store. Now, when I say make a pan of cornbread I’m talking about the quick and easy Jiffy box cornbread which is just add 1/3 cup of milk and an egg then pop in the oven for 20 minutes. Let cool, cut into cubes and toast in the oven for 7 minutes and voila cornbread croutons.
Cut cornbread into bite-sized cubes. Spread out on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake at 350 degrees for 7-10 minutes or until crisp.
Now for the dressing… the best part! It is not hard to make and I suggest doubling or tripling the recipe so you have some to keep in the fridge. It will last about 10 days in the fridge. To make the dressing I use a small mason jar with a lid. SO much easier to dump and shake than it is to whisk-who has time for that whisk and drizzle crap? Oh and one more important note-use the very best olive oil you can find/afford. Since you will not be cooking this oil you will be tasting all the flavors of the oil and there are MANY kids of olive oil. Buy the most expensive one you can afford-yes in this case price does make a difference. I use my $8 Trader Joe oil for cooking almost everything, but I use my best “fancy” oil for dressings. I have linked my favorite below.
A copycat recipe of the classic Honor Bar salad
- 6 cups Romaine Lettuce
- 1 1/2 lb. shredded Chicken Breast about 3 breasts or 1 rotisserie chicken
- 1 Avocado, cubed
- 4 oz Goat Cheese, crumbled
- 4 Roma Tomatoes, cut into wedges
- 1/2 cup Almonds, chopped
- 1 cup fresh Corn
- 16 Dates, sliced
- 1 1/2 cup Cornbread Croutons**
- 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
- 1 Lemon, juiced
- 1 teaspoon Champagne Vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Brown Sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1/4 teaspoon Fresh Black Pepper
- 1 clove Garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon Dried Basil
- 1/3 teaspoon Dried Oregano
- 1/2 cup Olive Oil
- 1 box Jiffy cornbread mix or whatever mix you can find
- 1/3 cup milk
- 1 egg
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Mix cornbread ingredients together and bake in oven according to directions, let cool.
After corn bread has cooled. Cut into cubes and arrange on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake in oven for 7-12 minutes or until crisp.
In a lidded jar (Mason Jar) combine all dressing ingredients and shake well. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Toss all salad ingredients together and drizzle dressing over top. Top with croutons.
- If you can find pre-made cornbread then just cube and bake in oven until crispy.
- If you are using chicken breast then place on a baking sheet and drizzle with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper and cook for 20-25 minutes in a 350 degree oven or until cooked through. Let cool and then shred.