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CHICKEN SALAD WITH MEDITERRANEAN ACCENT

In the summer, I often grill several boneless chicken breasts to have on hand for a quick lunch or dinner. Sometimes a meal is as simple as a sliced breast on a baguette topped with arugula and avocado and drizzled with dressing. But more often, I pair the chicken with greens to make a sensational salad.

One of my no-fail favorites involves adding chopped grilled chicken to a packaged lettuce combination. Sometimes I use a mix that includes fresh herbs; sometimes an iceberg lettuce and carrot mix catches my eye. I like to toss in dried or fresh fruit. Crumbled or sliced goat cheese provides contrasting texture as well as luxurious creaminess.

If you want to splurge by adding a sixth ingredient, sprinkle some toasted pine nuts or slivered almonds on top.

TO MAKE THE MEAL: Serve with French bread.

If you have a great-tasting main dish recipe that uses no more than five ingredients and can be made in 30 minutes or less, tell us. (Salt, pepper, water and oil for greasing a pan don't need to be included in the ingredient count.) If we publish your recipe, we'll send you a 5:30 Challenge apron. Send recipes to 5:30 Challenge, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Eighth Floor, 72 Marietta St. NW, Atlanta, GA 30303; or e-mail fivethirty@ajc.com.

ENTREE

Mediterranean Chicken Salad

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/2 cup balsamic vinaigrette dressing, divided

8 cups loosely packed lettuce mix

1/2 cup dried, sweetened cranberries, such as Craisins

4 ounces goat cheese, crumbed

- Preheat a lightly oiled grill to medium-high.

- On a plate, brush chicken with 2 tablespoons vinaigrette and set aside for 10 minutes.

- Grill chicken for 5 to 7 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing.

- In a bowl, toss lettuce with enough remaining dressing to lightly coat. Top with sliced chicken and sprinkle with cranberries and goat cheese.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional information per serving: 423 calories (percent of calories from fat, 58), 38g protein, 7g carbohydrates, 4g fiber, 27g fat (10g saturated), 96mg cholesterol, 200mg sodium.

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