Sunday, October 9, 2011

Curried Chicken Salad

Do you ever get stuck on a certain ingredient? I think it was my oatmeal that got me stuck on golden raisins. And my bean burritos got me stuck on cilantro. Well, this recipe has both and boy is it good! My in-laws were coming over today to see our pictures from Switzerland and to have lunch. I made curried chicken salad, egg salad, and had deli turkey for my Frances. (Elsie had a cheese sandwich made with, bleh, American cheese.) This is from, what else, Cooks Illustrated, but I poach my chicken instead of roasting it.

2 chicken breasts (4 halves ~2-3 lbs), poached (see below)
3/4 cup mayonnaise
6 Tbs golden raisins
2 ribs celery, finely diced
2 scallions, finely sliced
2 Tbs fresh cilantro, minced
2 Tbs fresh lemon juice from one lemon
2 tsp curry powder (on a whim, I ordered mine from Penzey's)
1 Tbs honey

To poach chicken so it's succulent and moist, I put the chicken and water in a pot (with a handful of salt) and bring it to a boil. I let that simmer for 10-15 minutes (depending on how thick the chicken breasts are), skimming the frothy stuff off the top. Turn off the heat and let the chicken cool in the water. This keeps it nice and moist. I cooked the chicken late last night and didn't want to wait for it to cool, so I just put it in a container, covered it with broth, sealed it, and stuck it in the fridge. It was perfect!

Once the chicken was cool, I cut each breast in half then into thirds and pulled it with my fingers into bite sized pieces. You should have about 5 cups or more. (I just used 5 or 6 cups of chicken and saved the rest for something else.) Add all the other ingredients and mix thoroughly. (The recipe calls for 3/4 - 1 cup mayo, but I, The Mayo Lover, felt 3/4 was plenty.) Salt and pepper to taste, but it's so good, you probably won't need any.

I can't help but think walnuts might be a good addition here.

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