Apple Cider Poached Chicken & Arugula Salad

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 15 min
Serves: 4

Tart cherries, sharp cheese, and bitter arugula work together in this delectable salad to complement the familiar flavours of cider-poached chicken. As a light lunch, this salad will make you feel like you’re dining in a bistro. Serve alongside a soup at dinner and you have a delicious meal you’ll feel like making again and again.


1 lb (0.5 kg) boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 cup (250 mL) apple cider
1/2 cinnamon stick(s)
1/2 star anise
1/4 cup (60 mL) cider vinegar
2 tbsp (30 mL) olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp (5 mL) Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp (1.25 mL) sea salt
2 tsp (10 mL) honey
1.5 oz (30 g) Brebis cheese
1.5 oz (30 g) feta cheese
1.5 oz (30 g) cream cheese
8 cups (2 L) baby arugula
1 cup (250 mL) red onion(s), sliced (optional garnish)
2 Gala apples, large (optional garnish)
3 Gala apples, small (optional garnish)
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried tart Montmorency cherries, (optional garnish)


1 Cut chicken thighs into 1” (2.5 cm) size pieces. Add to small pot with apple cider, cinnamon stick and star anise. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until chicken is cooked through; about 15 minutes. Remove meat from poaching liquid to cool. Reserve ½ cup (125 mL) of the poaching liquid and discard or freeze for another use.
2 Make vinaigrette by blending the remaining ½ cup (125 mL) of the poaching liquid with apple cider vinegar, olive oil, minced garlic, Dijon mustard, salt, honey and Brebis cheese in a food processor or blender.
3 Wash arugula and drain well. Divide in four and plate.
4 To serve, top with apple poached chicken, sliced red onion, apple slices and dried cherries. Drizzle with vinaigrette. Serve extra dressing on the side.