Here's an easy (and delicious) chicken salad recipe (thanks to Mom for this one). Because the chicken is poached, rather than roasted or cooked with seasonings, it has a really "clean" taste and is very light and refreshing, rather than having a smoky or more heavily seasoned flavor. It's particularly good for picky kids and husbands who don't like all that "weird stuff" you tend to find in today's recipes.
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (If you're using the big ones, you'll get 2-3 sandwiches worth of salad per breast.)
- Celery (One stick per chicken breast.)
- Regular or light mayonnaise (or Miracle Whip, if you prefer.)
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Boil chicken breasts in salted water until cooked through. If they're really huge, you can cut them in half first. I use a microwave-safe glass cooking dish with a vented lid to avoid boil-over. Stove-top is just as good.
- While chicken is boiling, chop celery (excluding leafy part) into whatever size pieces you like.
- Let cooked chicken drain and cool to room temperature. Tear or slice into small bite-sized chunks. (I find that shredding it gives it a slimy texture, and that chunks work best.)
- Mix chicken, celery, however much mayonnaise you like, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Chill and serve!
If you really want to liven things up, I've tried adding the following items in various combinations, with or without the celery from the recipe: sliced white grapes, golden raisins, chopped Granny Smith apples, sweet pickle relish, and diced pears. For a seasoning boost, I've tried various curry powders, Old Bay Seasoning, or whatever "Mrs. Dash" type seasoning blend tickled my fancy that day (Lemon Pepper is particularly good).
Good luck everyone!