Monday, November 15, 2010

Curried Chicken Salad with Cashews, Raisins, Scallions & Celery

Adapted from a recipe by Ina Garten
Serves 6
Curried Chicken Salad 
6 chicken breasts, bone-in, skin-on
about 1 Tbl extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cup mayonnaise (I’d recommend Hellman’s for sure)
1/3 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup mango chutney or Major Grey’s chutney (I like Stonewall Kitchen)
3 Tbl curry powder (sounds like a lot, I know)
3 large stalks celery, thinly sliced
4 scallions, both white and green parts, thinly sliced
1/2 cup raisins
1 1/2 cups roasted, salted whole cashews
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Line a sheet pan with tin foil, then place a wire rack on top.
Place the chicken breasts, bone-side down on the wire rack.  Season them, top and bottom, with salt and pepper.  Then rub them with olive oil. Roast until the an thermometer inserted into the meatiest part of the breast registers 160°F.  (I highly recommend using a thermometer like this one.  It’s fool proof.  A long, oven proof wire connects the thermometer probe with a digital reader, which beeps when the meat comes to the desired temperature.  It’s so incredibly handy, I don’t roast meat without it!)  Remove the chicken from the oven and set aside until cool enough to handle.  Then remove the meat from the bones, discarding the skin and bones.  Slice the chicken into large bite sized cubes.
Roasted Chicken Breasts
To make the dressing, stir to combine the mayonnaise, wine, chutney, curry powder and few pinches of salt in a large mixing bowl.  Mix until smooth. 
Combine the chicken with enough dressing to moisten it well – which should be just about most of it, but you may not need to use it all.  Add the celery, scallions and raisins.  Mix well.  At this point, the chicken salad can be refrigerated in an air-tight container until needed, up to a day or two.  Before serving, remove the salad from the refrigerator and warm for about an hour at room temperature.  Then add the cashews and mix to combine. 
You can serve this as a salad dish or use it for as a sandwich filling.