Appetizers,  Breakfast / Brunch,  Chicken

Sonoma Chicken Salad

When I was doing my personal chef gig, this salad was a favorite for yacht trips, weekend vacationers and in moveable feasts.  I became aware of this salad through its popularity at Whole Foods as one of their classic market dishes.  Once again, it’s using a simple few quality ingredients that makes it so good!

I like to make this chicken salad more in the Fall with the grapes, pecans and the mayo poppy seed based dressing.  Having roasted chicken already made, I can pull this together quite quickly.  While its great on the day its made, the flavors improve the next day which makes it an excellent make-ahead dish.  I like to serve it on a bed of mixed greens with fresh fruit  or in a sandwich or topped on toasted baguette slices or crackers for brunch or lunch dining.

Sonoma Chicken Salad

Adapted from Whole Foods Market

For the Salad:
4 cups roughly chopped cooked, roasted chicken
3/4 cup pecan pieces, toasted
2 cups red seedless grapes, halved or whole
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced

For the Dressiing:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons poppy seeds
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Combine chicken, pecans, grapes, celery in a large bowl.  Mix in dressing.  Can be made one day ahead.

For the dressing:  In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, Dijon, vinegar, honey, poppy seeds and salt and pepper.  Mix well.  Dressing can be made up to two days prior to mixing the salad.

I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.

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