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Pulled Capon and Watercress Salad with Citrus Dressing


This is a fantastic alternative to the usually mayonnaise-rich, chunky chicken salad—and a great way to use leftover capon or chicken. Tim Love pulls the meat into tender shreds, then tosses the salad with a citrusy, mildly spicy vinaigrette.

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  1. 2 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
  2. 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  3. 1 small shallot, halved
  4. 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, plus 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  5. 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, plus 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
  6. 1 jalapeño, seeded
  7. 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  8. 1 tablespoon dry white wine
  9. Salt and freshly ground pepper
  10. 1 head of Bibb lettuce, torn into large pieces
  11. 4 cups reserved shredded capon (1 1/4 pounds)
  12. 1 bunch of watercress (6 ounces), thick stems discarded
  13. 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
  14. 1 avocado, cut into 1-inch cubes
  1. In a small skillet, cook the garlic in the olive oil over moderately low heat until fragrant and soft, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a blender and let cool. Add the shallot, lemon juice and zest, lime juice and zest, jalapeño, vinegar and wine to the blender and process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Transfer 1 tablespoon of the dressing to a large bowl. Add the Bibb lettuce and toss to coat. Arrange the lettuce on a platter. Add the capon and watercress to the bowl along with the onion, avocado and the remaining dressing and toss. Mound the capon salad over the lettuce and serve right away.
Make Ahead
The dressing can be refrigerated overnight.

Suggested Pairing

For this spicy variation on a classic chicken salad, try a rosado, as rosé wines are typically known in Spain. Predominantly made from the Tempranillo grape (just as red Riojas are), rosado Riojas typically have sweet berry fruit flavors that will cool the jalapeño heat here.