Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Curried chicken salad

Chicken salad is another one of those classic foods that the Kitchen Witch wouldn't even try until last year. Why?? Mayo! Let me be the first to tell you when you decide you don't like something like mayo it really really really limits your food choices, especially in summer. Potato salad? Nope. Tuna salad? Oh heck no! Chicken salad?! Don't even waste my time. That's how it used to be around here until the Witch put on her big girl pants & got over her mayo aversion. Ok, sure, I still don't love mayo, but I'll enjoy some chicken salad and not be grossed out about it. How mature of me! When the weather is hot outside who wants to stand in an even hotter kitchen and cook? Not this Witch, that's for sure!! Enter the wonder that is chicken salad. There are so many versions of chicken salad, its as varied as your individual tastes. Recently my tastes were telling me curry, and rather than heat up the kitchen making a curry base I decided to just make a curried chicken salad.

Now, as you may or may not know, the Witch is a all about keeping on a budget. this chicken salad was the brain child of wanting curry, stuff on sale & what I had in my pantry. Here's how it came together and its approximate costs. Rotisserie chickens were on sale for $4 each, so I got one and picked it clean and used half of it ($2). About a month ago the store had a BOGO sale on dried fruit: I picked up some dried mangos with no real intent of how or where to use them. Seeing as how I enjoy a burst of sweetness in my chicken salad and mango is awesome with curry, I decided to dice some up and add it to the salad ($3 a bag, BOGO, $1.50 a bag, used less than 1/4 bag so about .25). Walnuts and pecans, what I had on handalong with a rib of celery added a nice crunch and nutty flavor (approx $.50 in nuts and celery). Curry powder and cardamom were in my pantry already, along with garlic and onion powders (cost less than .25 total for all spices). Lastly the mayo and sour cream were already in my fridge, I'll approximate their costs at .50 total. All in all my lunch for 2 people cost $3.50. And no heating up the kitchen, bonus!!

The flavors on this salad was so good. The cardamom and curry powder set the base flavors, spicy but not hot, rich and complex and just plain delicious. The creamy mayo and sour cream round out the flavors. Bursts of sweetness came from the mango which was a delightful contrast to the crunchy nuts and celery. And the rotisserie chicken provided its own savory delicious flavor. Next time I make this, and there WILL be a next time, I think I'll make some naan too. The curried salad on fresh soft naan would be out of this world good. If you don't have naan you can use regular bread, crackers or just eat it plain. Enjoy!

Curried Chicken Salad
makes 2 servings
1/2 rotisserie chicken, picked of its meat including wings, skin & bones discarded
1 t curry powder
2 cardamom pods ground and green pod discarded
1/8 t each garlic powder and onion powder
1/2 t kosher salt
pinch ground black pepper
1/3 to 1/2 c mayo
1/4 c sour cream
1 rib celery diced
1/4 nuts, walnuts and pecans
4 slices dried mango, diced

Mix the spices with the mayo and sour cream. Stir until very smooth and allow to rest for about 20-30 minutes.

~*~Kitchen Witch Tip: When ever I'm making a salad or dressing I like to use powdered or granulated garlic and onion. You get all the flavor with out the sharpness that fresh can give you. It is important to let your dressing rest for about 30 minutes before eating it as this gives time for the garlic and onion powders to rehydrate and achieve maximum flavor.~*~

Dice the mango and celery. Chop up the shredded chicken meat. Chop the nuts and add everything into a mixing bowl.

Pour the spiced mayo blend over the chicken and veggie/nut mix. Stir well to coat everything well. Best if allowed to rest for 30 minutes before serving as this will rehydrate the mango slices as well as the onion & garlic powders.

Nutrition Facts provided by SparkPeople recipe calculator
Amount Per Serving
Calories 604.8
Total Fat 54.6 g
Saturated Fat 11.1 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 7.4 g
Monounsaturated Fat 6.6 g
Cholesterol 77.7 mg
Sodium 1,017.5 mg
Potassium 183.8 mg
Total Carbohydrate 14.3 g
Dietary Fiber 2.0 g
Sugars 8.6 g
Protein 19.8 g


The InTolerant Chef said...

What a lovely sounding recipe, it has so much going on! I use yogurt for my chicken salads, it's not as 'gluggy' as mayonaise.

Big Dude said...

Andea - A follow up on Cherokee Purple maters. It is hard to tell when they get ripe as they just become a darker version of whatever their color is called and they seem to always retain the green shoulders - so your's may have been getting ripe.

Jenn said...

Mmmmmmmm... curry chicken in a pita!! I love the idea and nicely done on the savings.. you can't beat that for sure! Can you believe people at my work will spend $10 on a lunch that isn't even half this good?? Crazy!!

Siri said...

Delish, me want.

anthony stemke said...

Hey kitchen which, good stuff here. I like to use yoghurt instead of mayo. Although mayo is ok, you can make french style potato salad with olive oil.
But anyway, love your thrift and your recipe.

Anonymous said...

Wow - delicious chicken salad! I love curry in it...my favorite!

Michael Toa said...

Love curried chicken salad. How delicious.

Karen Harris said...

I'm so glad that you got over your aversion to mayo so you could make this and share it with us. Your recipe kind of reminds me of Coronation Chicken which is one of my favorite things in the world. Like you, I love frugal recipes. Thanks for this one. By the way, your stuffed bell peppers look delicious!

StephenC said...

Did I see on another blog this morning that you have not eaten fresh tuna? (I have a confession to make: I prefer canned tuna to fresh. Please tell no one.) I like mayo but use it in fairly small quantities. I could be just as happy with an olive oil and Dijon emulsion with some s & p and other herbs or spices.

StephenC said...

And did you say $4 for a rotisserie chicken? Holy cow, here in DC a fresh chicken costs $8-$10!

cajunlicious said...

What a perfect lunch!

Cranberry Morning said...

This is exactly the recipe I needed to read. What a perfect summertime lunch. It looks delicious and I can't wait to make it!

Stephers said...

Mmmm, I have been looking for a new chicken salad recipe. This one sounds yummy! Now, I don't think I have ever seen cardamom pods. Are they easy to find?

Andrea the Kitchen Witch said...

Stephers cardamom pods aren't hard to find but they can be pricey. I'd look for them at a health food store so you can get a small amount to try them out. Or you can use ground cardamom. I happened to have the whole pods on hand so that's what I used, but then ground. Either will work! Thank you for your comments!!

Lyndsey said...

This sounds awesome. I do like mayo, but when making chicken salad or crab pasta salad I do mix it with sour cream or Greek yogurt. Now Miricle Whip is something I just can't handle...no matter what you do with it.

Farmer Jo said...

Andrea - I was just about to post a curry chicken salad recipe on my site when I decided to catch up on reading.
Great minds :) You beat me to it! I used apples and cranberries though.

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