Thursday, July 22, 2010

Tarragon Chicken Salad

So, this is the chicken salad recipe I had been referring to... The one that one of my residents begged her daughter for so that she could give it to me! Admittedly, I did change a couple of things in the original recipe to suit my own tastes better, but the original comes from Kathy! :-)

I remember when I was first given the recipe... One of the ingredients - East Shore brand Key Lime mustard - is not a very conventional ingredient at all, and I spent a long time searching in local grocery stores for the dumb stuff. Only to find that Kathy usually gets it when she vacations in Door County! So, we called Kathy up and she told us exactly where I could find this mustard, which happens to be a little store called Main Street Market in Egg Harbor, Wisconsin. Needless to say, I called them up and gave them my credit card information to send me some of this mustard... Now, normally, I would have just forgone the special mustard and opted for a good Dijon instead (which is what I did when making it prior to ordering this special mustard), but I was intrigued by what the flavor might taste like. It's really quite interesting!
I don't know if anyone else does this, but I do it all the time... Any time I'm working with a new ingredient that I'm not sure of, I taste it. Just the ingredient, whatever it may be. There are a few exceptions, of course, but I generally taste everything separately before adding it to anything else. Spices... Herbs... Fruits... Vegetables... Sauces... Mustards... Whatever! It really is easier to know/figure out what I would like best with an ingredient if I know what said ingredient tastes like on its own. And this Key Lime mustard was no exception. In fact, I still remember the day it came in the mail... I opened my mailbox and was initially confused by what it could be in this big manila envelope, until I saw the return address and realized that it was my mustard arriving already!! (I'm easily excitable at times...) I ran back to my apartment and immediately ripped the envelope open and took the jar of mustard out, followed by breaking the seal and taking a small sample about a minute later! It's different... But really tasty!

Now, like I said, if you can't find the Key Lime mustard and/or don't want to order it, don't even worry about it; feel free to use a good Dijon mustard instead. And feel free to mix up some of the ingredients if you prefer something else, make it your own! That's what recipes are for. Recipes are not set in stone, they're a guide you can change all you want until they are exactly what you do want!

2 (13 oz.) cans Chicken Breast (like Tyson)
4 Tbsp. coarsely chopped walnuts
4 tsp. dried minced onions
4 tsp. dried tarragon leaves
8-12 twists fresh ground pepper
1/2 - 3/4 c. craisins
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. Key Lime (East Shore brand) or Dijon mustard
1 c. Hellman's mayonnaise

Drain the chicken and remove from cans to a double layer of paper towels; pat dry and then flake the chicken into a medium bowl. Add the next five ingredients and stir to combine. Mix together the mustard and mayonnaise in a small bowl and add to the chicken mixture. Cover and chill; allow to sit for at least an hour to marry the flavors. Serve on croissants.

No comments:

Post a Comment