Do you have a "signature dish?" I don't mean that in a pretentious show-offy way... more like if you go to potluck or are making food for someone, do you always make the same thing? Are you "known" for a specific dish? I typically enjoy trying new recipes, so I like to mix things up and rarely repeat recipes. However, I've made this chicken salad three times in the past week. And it's pretty safe to say that it could easily become my signature dish.
I've long been a fan of chicken salad, but I am pretty particular about it. I like having a fruit in there - usually apples, grapes, or even dried fruit. I am particular about the dressing - easy on the mayo, a bit of Dijon mustard, and a little honey. And I like having nuts in it as well - usually toasted almonds or pecans. And I always prefer my chicken salad on a croissant. So this isn't so different from my basic formula, but it's a combination that I never would have thought to use for chicken salad.
Shredded chicken is tossed with poppyseed dressing and just a little mayonnaise - really just enough to hold it together. Plain yogurt would work well here too. A few herbs are mixed in - scallions and basil or mint. And then fresh strawberries are folded into the salad. It strikes that perfect balance between sweet and savory, and I am totally and unabashedly in love. I'm pretty sure I could eat this every single day for lunch for the rest of the spring and summer and be happy.
It was great by itself, on a croissant, or on a bed of greens. It would be perfect to serve at a bridal or baby shower - so pretty and springy! I try not to rave over every single recipe I post here (OMG BEST THING EVER! MAKE THIS NOW!!), but seriously. This is one of my favorite things ever, you really should make it now. :)
Strawberry-Poppyseed Chicken Salad
adapted from Southern Living, March 2012
- 4 cups shredded or chopped chicken (fully cooked)
- 1/2 cup poppyseed salad dressing
- 2-3 Tbs mayonnaise or plain yogurt
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbs chopped scallions
- 2 Tbs chopped fresh basil or mint
- 2 cups chopped strawberries
In a large bowl, combine the chicken, salad dressing, mayonnaise, and pepper. Stir well to coat. If it seems a bit dry, add a little more dressing or mayonnaise. Gently fold in the chopped scallions, basil, and strawberries. Taste and season with salt and/or pepper. Refrigerate until ready to serve.