Chicken salad is a great dish for buffet-style relaxed entertaining. It can be prepared ahead of time, and tastes even better after chilling. It is easy to serve, and it pairs well with different dishes and salads.
Unlike in THIS recipe, this time I didn’t have roasted chicken at hand, so I decided to use poached chicken breast instead, which turned out moist and flavorful.
As grapes are now in season, I added a nice amount of them to the cooked chicken. They added wonderful freshness and slight acidity and sweetness to the salad. Fresh tarragon and mint added their distinct fresh aroma and flavor, along with bright color. Mayonnaise, mustard and fresh lemon juice created a nice creamy dressing, that coated all the ingredients and enhanced their flavors. Lightly toasted walnuts were tossed in just before serving, and added their flavor and crunchy texture. This is a wonderful summer salad, that can be enjoyed any time of the day. Try it and enjoy.
Prep time: 20 minutes
Poaching time: 20 minutes
Chilling time: 1 hour
1 lbs (455 grams) chicken breasts, (preferably air-chilled)
3-4 dried bay leaves
½ Tbs black peppercorns
1 tsp salt
½ tsp maple syrup
1 tsp freshly grated ginger
For the salad:
1 cup black seedless grapes
1 cup green seedless grapes
½ cup packed fresh tarragon and mint
2 tsp salt
½ tsp freshly ground four peppers mix
½ cup mayonnaise (I used Hellman’s)
1 Tbs whole grain Dijon mustard
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp maple syrup
A few drops hot sauce (optional)
1/3 cup roughly chopped walnuts, lightly roasted
1. Place the chicken breasts in a medium pot. Add the bay leaves, peppercorns, salt, maple syrup, ginger, and water to cover. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to medium-low, skim off the scum and cook for 15 minutes. Let cool to room temperature in the liquid. Drain (the poaching liquids can be used in a soup), chop roughly, and place in a large bowl.
2. Slice the grapes and roughly chop the tarragon and mint, and add to the bowl. Add the salt, pepper, mayonnaise, lemon juice, maple syrup and hot sauce. Mix well and taste to adjust seasoning, if needed.
3. Cover and place in the fridge for an hour, and up to overnight. Before serving, bring to room temperature, add the walnuts and mix again.