Jun 30, 2010

Recipe of the Week: Mom & Daughter's Hot Chicken Salad

I'd love to take credit for this recipe, but I was simply smart enough to snag it from my mom before I got married.  It makes a great dinner entree, or a savory meat dish for a brunch.  When I take it to our annual "Salad Night" for Secret Sisters, I always come home with an empty dish.  I have modified it slightly (my modifications are noted below.)

Hot Chicken Salad

Mom's original ingredients:
1 pound (approximately 2 cups) diced cooked chicken
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1 cup sliced celery
1/2 cup toasted almonds and chopped (I prefer slivered almonds, untoasted)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese, set aside
Crushed potato chips for garnish (sour cream and onion work particularly well)

Terry's modifications:
1) Substitute diced green onion (with some green tops) for the onion - adjust quantity to taste
2) Increase chicken to 3 generous cups
3) Reduce mayonnaise to 3/4 cup.  Add 1/2 cup sour cream and 4 ounces cream cheese (softened) - blend with mayonnaise before adding other ingredients.

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except 1/2 cup cheese and potato chips.  Pour into a shallow baking dish; top with potato chips and remaining cheese.  Bake at 350 about 25-30 minutes or until bubbling hot.

Makes 6-8 servings.

As you can see, this recipe is not exactly heart-healthy.  If you're watching your calories or fat grams, low-fat ingredients may be substituted (mayonnaise, sour cream, cream cheese and shredded cheese) - experiment to find the right balance of flavor and texture vs. calories and fat.

This makes a great summer dinner with a fresh tossed salad and some bread, although someone may point out the irony of serving a salad-with-a-salad.