Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Mama's Marvelous Chicken Salad

I shared last week that I am a cornbread snob. Well, I must share another confession- I am also a chicken salad SNOB. The only chicken salad I like is my mother's recipe. It's a very simple recipe- which is what I think is the beauty of the recipe. I know some people use canned chicken or boneless chicken in their chicken salad, but to me- REAL chicken salad requires the time and effort of boiling and then de-boning your own chicken. It's so worth every minute of the work!

1 package skinless chicken breast with bones (usually 3-4 breasts)
1 1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 small lemon
1 small lime
1 cup light Miracle Whip (I never measure this so I'm guessing here)
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste

Place chicken breasts in large pot of water seasoned with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and boil until chicken is completely cooked. Drain and cool. De-bone chicken and dice into small bite sized pieces. Place almonds in a layer on cookie sheet and turn oven on to broil. Place cookie sheet in oven to toast the almonds. Be sure to watch them very carefully. Immediately take almonds out of oven as soon as they begin to turn brown. DO NOT wait or you will burn your almonds (trust me says the girl who has done it before :). Set almonds aside to cool. In large mixing bowl place diced chicken. Sprinkle with the juice of lemon and lime. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in Miracle Whip- adding more than the cup called for if necessary. Carefully stir in toasted almonds. Cover and refrigerate. (You can skip that step but I think it's best after it's been chilled a bit). This chicken salad is best served on fresh croissants or fresh white bread. It's one of the only times I ever eat white bread but it just isn't the same on wheat.

TIP OF THE DAY: If you are going to the time and trouble of cooking and de-boning chicken- do double what you need and either use it for either some homemade chicken soup or freeze it for another day.

Tomorrow's Daily Special: Maple Butter Blondies