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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Sonoma Chicken Salad

It's finally summertime here in Florida and if the last few weeks are any indication, it's going to be a very hot season.  With temperatures reaching the upper 90's, we were looking forward to something cool and refreshing for dinner, and this recipe was the perfect solution.

With a combination of poached chicken breast, crunchy pecans and sweet juicy grapes, a tangy honey and mayonnaise dressing was the perfect finish to this dinner salad.  Serve with a glass of light, fruity chardonnay, sauvignon blanc or a bright, juicy riesling wine.

To save time, the dressing can be made several hours ahead of serving time.  Enjoy!!

1 cup Light or Regular Mayonnaise
2 tsp  Dijon Mustard
4 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
5 tsp Honey
1 or 2 tsp Poppy Seeds, to taste
Salt and Ground Black Pepper, to taste

3  boneless, skinless Chicken Breasts, thinly slices horizontally to create 6 pieces
1 cup  Pecan Pieces, chopped
2 cups Red Seedless Grapes, rinsed
3 stalks Celery, thinly sliced
Chopped Romaine or Mixed Greens

Prepare the dressing by mixing the mayo, mustard, vinegar, honey, poppy seeds and salt and pepper in a bowl. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before you are ready to dress the salad.

Place the chicken breasts in one layer in a large skillet and season generously with salt and pepper.  Add 2 cups water to the pan and bring the chicken to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until the chicken is cooked through.  Remove the cooked chicken from the pan and place on a platter to cool for 20 minutes.  Refrigerate the chicken for about 30 minutes or until chilled.

Cut the cooled chicken into bite-sized pieces and transfer to a large bowl. Stir in the pecans, grapes, celery and dressing, adding salt or pepper, if needed.  Place 2 cups of chopped romaine on a plate and top with 2 cups of the salad mixture.  Serve about 6.