After baking several sheet pans of Basic Salt and Pepper Roasted Chicken Breasts, Taylor and I were ready to make (and consume) some Classic Chicken Salad. Great on a spoon, in a sandwich or warm in a casserole dish, this chicken salad has been a family staple for years.
Cubed, cooked chicken is mixed with celery, fresh parsley, shallots and a hint of fresh thyme. Just enough mayonnaise to bind, fresh lemon juice, dijon mustard, worcestershire and a splash of Tabasco are swirled into the chicken mixture. The salad is chilled for 30 minutes or so and then you are ready to eat a dish or two…
Like all classic recipes, this recipe is just the starting gate. Feel free to vary the salad by adding fruit (apples, grapes, raisins), toasted chopped nuts (almonds, pecans, walnuts) and/or additional herbs and spices and take this salad to wherever your tastebuds want to wander.
I had fun introducing Taylor and his brother, Harrison, to open-faced hot chicken salad sandwiches. Buttered, toasted bread is topped with Classic Chicken Salad, toasted almonds, grated white cheddar and crunchy potato chips, then warmed in the oven. The sandwich is a throwback nod to the Hot Chicken Salad Casserole that was popular in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Judging by the trail of crumbs that the fellas left behind, I can confidently say that this sandwich is a keeper!
Classic Chicken Salad
Makes 6-8 servings
6 cups cooked, cubed Salt and Pepper Chicken Roasted Breasts
3/4 cup finely chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 Tablespoons minced shallots
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1 cup mayonnaise
1 1/2 Tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
Salt and Pepper to taste
1. Put the cooked chicken into a large mixing bowl. Add the celery, parsley and shallots and thyme… Add the mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard, worcestershire sauce and Tabasco.
2. Using a spatula, swirl the mayonnaise into the chicken. Using a spatula, continue to fold the chicken and ingredients together until all are blended and coated with the dressing. Taste the chicken salad. Add salt and pepper to taste, stir. Chill the chicken salad in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or longer until ready to serve.
Recipe ©Sally James Mathis
Photography ©Taylor Mathis