Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Your New Favorite Chicken Salad

There are about 1.8 million chicken salad recipes out there.  Yes, I checked my facts.  If there are so many, then why do we not crave chicken salad?!  I will admit that normally when I see chicken salad in a restaurant or a grocery store, my mind goes straight to:  dried out pieces of chicken (or worse, canned!) mayo and celery.    Am I right?  Not the best image in our minds or taste in our mouths.  Let's change that.  Try my chicken salad and you'll never go back to that wretched original served kitty corner to tomato aspic.  My chicken salad is packed with fresh, bright flavor and accented with almonds and grapes.  

Chicken Salad

4-6 chicken boobs
Olive oil
Salt & Pepper
½ C. Mayonnaise
The juice of 1 lemon
1 C. grapes, halved
½ C. almonds, chopped

Prepare your chicken boobs by seasoning them with salt and pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.  Allow them to marinate for about 20 minutes. 

In a medium skillet, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.  When it’s quite hot, add several of the chicken boobs.  Let them cook for a good 4-6 minutes without moving them.  You want them to get a good golden brown crust.  After they have browned, flip and cook for another 4 minutes on the other side.

When the chicken is fully cooked, remove from the pan and let sit.  Do not cut into them right away or they will dry out.  Repeat with the rest of the chicken.  When the chicken has rested for at least 5 minutes, cut into bite-sized pieces. 

In a large bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, salt & pepper.  Wisk until the sauce is smooth.  Add the grapes, almonds and chicken and toss to coat them evenly.  

Chill in the fridge for at least an hour so the flavors can marry.  Serve on toasted croissants.

*TIP:  Many chicken salad recipes call for boiled chicken or canned chicken.  Go a step further and pan-fry it.  The color you get on the chicken adds another layer of flavor that sets this recipe apart.  Rotisserie Chicken would work really well too.

**TIP:  Grapes add a fresh sweetness to this combination.  Experiment with other fruit such as dried apricots or raisins for more sweet texture.  

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