Monday, April 11, 2016

Frugal Femme Two Week Menu #2: Week Two, Monday: Carole's Chicken Salad and Roasted Tomatoes

Hello Everyone!
It's Monday so, no interesting stories to share with everyone.  Well, okay, not entirely true.  I crafted something for my French bulldog Basil tonight, but I'm not going to reveal anything until the event I was crafting for has happened.  I love a good surprise.

Basil's friend, Mogli, is obviously quivering with excitement.  (This is my sister-in law's dog, he is a living stuffed toy and is one of the cutest dogs on the planet.)

Here he is, ready for his close-up.  Because this much cute cannot be contained.
On Saturday night, we prepared a Roast chicken and had LOTS left over.  Tonight is one of the nights we use up some of that chicken. 
I'm really going out on a limb with this post. Or at least it feels that way. People have some very definite ideas about what should, and what should not, go into a chicken salad.  I am not a chicken salad purist, I embrace most chicken salads - with all kinds of things in them.  Yet, even I, cannot handle a chicken salad with boiled eggs in it. I also haven't been brave enough to try one with grapes in it.  Although I am tempted to try the recipe put up by the Pioneer Woman--it has grapes, and brown sugar, and half and half in it.  ALL of those things seem odd to me to put in a chicken salad.  But I've tried other dishes by her and they were good, so it makes me want to be brave.

If I can give one rule for chicken salad it is this:  Don't feel structured in by someone else's recipe!!!  Do what you think tastes good.  I am  firm believer that recipes are just guidelines when it comes to cooking --  not for baking-- if you are baking, for the love of all that is holy,  ALWAYS follow the recipe to the letter, or gastronomical accidents happen.  But for cooking, you are the one that knows what you like- so go for it!

Carole's Chicken Salad

1 1/2- 2 cups cooked chicken (I like my chicken diced into tiny pieces, some people like their's processed through a food processor, others like big chunks of chicken.  Do whatever you like.)
1 whole green onion, minced (Again, if you like green onion, you may want bigger pieces.)
1/4 cup mayo
1/4 cup sour cream (I have also used yogurt--it tastes just as good and is healthier.)
1 tbsp. white wine vinegar (I have also used freshly squeezed lemon juice, it just depends on what I have on hand.)
1 tbsp. fresh dill, minced
1 tsp. dry dill (The dry dill has a different flavor than the fresh dill, the two combined is gang busters.)
1/2 tsp. celery salt (You can also put 1 rib of celery, I am not a huge fan of celery in chicken salad, so I get the flavor with the salt.)
1-2 tsp. Splenda (You can use sugar.  Add a little bit at a time and taste.  You may like your chicken salad a little tangy and not want to add any sugar at all.  I like to put just a little, for me, it rounds out the flavors.)
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1-2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. Creole seasoning (Or more depending on your personal taste.)
1/4 tsp. truffle oil
2 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled

1.  In a large bowl, mix your chicken and green onion.  Set aside.
Dill from my herb garden and minced green onions.
I like my chicken chopped like this.  But you be you.  Do what you like.

2.  In a medium size bowl combine ALL remaining ingredients, except for the bacon.  Stir until all the ingredients are smooth.  Taste, if you feel you want to add more of something, go for it.  This will be a strong flavored dressing.  When you are tasting it, remember that it will be going with your roast chicken.  If you used the recipe from Saturday's post, then you will want to add plenty of herbs.   If you made a chicken with more herbs, you may want to reduce the herbs so that the flavors don't clash or over power one another.

3.  Pour the dressing over chicken and green onions and gently fold the dressing in with the chicken until thoroughly combined.
4.  Add the crumbled bacon and fold into the chicken mixture until thoroughly combined.


5.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours.  This will allow the flavors to combine.  You can eat it right after you're done, but it is so much better if you wait.

Serving Suggestion:  I served tonight's chicken salad as an open faced "sandwich" and used a couple slices of my stuffing bread.  But you can put this on salad greens or toss it with pasta or eat it on crackers.  Heck, you can eat it straight out of the bowl if you would like.

To go along with this meal, I am serving The Barefoot Contessa's Roasted Basil Tomatoes recipe.
I know that I have posted it before, but it goes so well with this dish, that I couldn't force myself to make anything else.

To get the recipe for the roasted tomatoes, click on the link below:

That is it for tonight, come join me tomorrow when I will make Beef Stew for Two, Country Herb Croissants, and Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing.

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