Tag Archives: easy salads

My new favorite chicken salad

My twist on ATK’s Classic Chicken Salad; it’s light & lemony & yummy

It’s from America’s Test Kitchen. Raise your hand if you’re surprised I fell in love with yet another ATK recipe. No? Nobody? Yeah, me either. It’s no secret I’m a rabid fan of America’s Test Kitchen cookbooks and TV shows. I just love that they devote their lives to perfecting recipes so I don’t have to.

So let’s get on to the chicken salad. This Classic Chicken Salad is adapted from The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook (revised edition).

1 rotisserie chicken from your grocer’s deli, plain
2 tablespoons canola oil
3 ribs celery, chopped fine
3/4 cup mayonnaise (we prefer Hellman’s)
2 scallions, minced
2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley
kosher salt & cracked black pepper to taste

Bone and chop your rotisserie chicken and toss it in a mixing bowl.

Note: I prefer the plain chicken seasoned only with salt & pepper. I say that because I once mistakenly grabbed a barbecue seasoned chicken and it was a horrible choice for chicken salad. Don’t be like me; read the label.

Add the canola oil, celery, mayonnaise, scallions, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, parsley and a good pinch of salt & pepper. Give it a stir and allow it to sit for a few minutes, then come back and taste it. I found I liked this recipe with a little more lemon juice, so I added another tablespoon. It gives it a bright citrus zing. Instead of adding more juice, you could also throw in some zested lemon peel, since you’re using a fresh lemon anyway. What I’m saying here is that the lemon is my favorite part of this chicken salad. It’s refreshing. And zingy. I also add a pretty heavy pinch of fresh cracked black pepper, because that’s my thing. I loved cracked black pepper.

Cover tightly and refrigerate for about 20-30 minutes before serving. It helps the flavors come together, and everyone is happier when they’re all getting along. To serve, simply scoop onto your favorite chicken salad vehicle. In my case, it’s a toasted bagel. I can also vouch for the fact that it’s delicious on whole wheat toast, saltine crackers and celery sticks.

If you’re feeling frisky, you can top it with a fresh sliced tomato and a nice crispy piece of romaine. I also highly recommend spicy sweet pickles and your favorite chips on the side so you can get in all the food groups – sweet, salty, crunchy and creamy. Wait, that’s wrong. There are five food groups. I totally left off chocolate! {slaps forehead} Have mercy… can you ever forgive me?

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Salad Week: Quite Possibly the Strangest Salad You May Never Eat

I’ll be honest. The reaction I usually get when I talk about this salad is “ewww!” I get it. It’s weird. But oddly enough, it’s really delicious. Especially if you love cauliflower. Now, I’m not going to beat you over the head and tell you how you just HAVE to try this one. But if you’re adventurous, and if you love cauliflower, then at least promise me that you’ll consider giving it a try. I would hope that you would trust me by now. It’s not like I’m asking you to eat a bug, after all.

Raw Cauliflower Salad:
1 medium head of cauliflower
1 small can of chopped black olives
3 scallions, thinly sliced
1 cup mayonnaise
a pinch each of salt & pepper

Remove the leaves and stems from the cauliflower, leaving just the florets. Chop the florets into 1/2″ pieces and toss them into a mixing bowl. Add the olives, scallions, mayonnaise, salt & pepper and stir to combine. Place into an air-tight container with a tight-fitting lid and place in the refrigerator for at least 1-2 hours before serving. Refrigerate leftovers. This dish is best if eaten within 48 hours since the raw cauliflower will start to discolor and soften over time.

Note: I first tried this recipe almost 30 years ago, when The Complete Package and I were first married. It’s another one of my mother-in-law’s retro classics. It’s an oldie, but a goodie. It’s a fresh, crunchy side for any picnic and pairs perfectly with grilled meats and a bottle of Beano. Yes, Beano; not vino. And I think you all know where I’m going with that. Although, now that I think about it, I’m sure it would also be lovely with a cold, crisp white like a Riesling. Cheers, adventurous salad lovers!

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Speaking of adventurous salad lovers, check out these lovely salads already posted for Salad Week and be sure to tell these ladies I said hello!

Chicken Mole Salad – by Megan at Wanna Be A Country Cleaver
Simple Caesar Salad – by Kirsten at Comfortably Domestic
Party Salad – by Kat at Tenaciously Yours
Parmesan Salad Cups – by Lauren at Climbing Grier Mountain
Tabbouleh Salad That Made Me Cry – by Allison at Decadent Philistines

Check in Saturday when all of our Salad Week bloggers post additional salads in a big Salad Week Grand Finale. There will also be a linky party at Allison’s place starting Saturday morning. You’ll not only see all of our salads from the past week, but you’ll also be able to link up your own favorites.

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