Monday, February 11, 2013

Chicken Salad, Two Ways

So far, this "carb detox" isn't so bad. Maybe I've reached that threshold where cravings have subsided, OR I'm still in that initial motivational high period that I hope lasts beyond the first few weeks! What is it about dieting that has me thinking about food 24/7? Night-time reading is a stack of cookbooks, though I'm reading about healthy recipes and figuring out how to transform those not-so-light recipes into something I can actually have. I am optimistic about this effort and figure, if I have everything I need at hand, then I WILL do this! So yep, food on the brain these days. Well, at least I am thinking about healthy, hearty food that can only be good for me.  And with that in mind, last night (while watching Downton Abbey!) I poached two chicken breast halves (boneless, skinless) in lightly salted water, and put them away for today's meals, and tomorrow's. For lunch, I cut one up into large chunks and added celery and chopped walnuts for a really satisfying chicken salad, and took half of that to work with me and the rest will be lunch tomorrow. Typically, I'd add dried cranberries but they're too high in sugar for now. This chicken salad is delish!

For dinner, I sliced half of the remaining breast into thin strips which topped an abundant plate of romaine lettuce, veggies, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, walnuts, and goat cheese crumbles.  

Here's how I poached the chicken:

Place boneless, skinless chicken breast halves in pan and just cover with water. Add a few shakes of salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover leaving a little crack for steam, and simmer for 15 minutes. Cut into one to see if it's cooked through (no pink).

Place cooked chicken on plate and drizzle with balsamic vinegar dressing. Cover and refrigerate over night.

CHICKEN SALAD #1:







1 cooked chicken breast half, cut in 1/2-inch chunks
1 stalk celery, cut in 1/2-inch chunks
1 tablespoon chopped walnuts
salt/pepper to taste
1-2 tablespoons mayonnaise (even less is fine, and use light if you have it)

Stir all of the above ingredients together.  Divide in half and package in to-go containers.  Makes 2 servings.



CHICKEN SALAD #2:




2 cups cut-up romaine or other lettuces
1 stalk celery, cut up
1 hard-boiled egg, sliced
1/2 of cooked chicken breast half, sliced thin (save the other half for another salad)
a few slices tomato
sliced cucumbers
6 olives
1 tablespoon chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon goat cheese crumbles
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar dressing

Arrange all of the above ingredients in large salad bowl or dinner plate.  Drizzle with balsamic dressing.

Be prepared to be VERY satisfied with this great salad!

Coming soon:  more good-for-you snacks and desserts!

16 comments:

  1. Both sound yummy. Will have to try the both.

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    1. Try them Deb, and let me know how you like them!

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  2. yum and yummy !!! keep them comng !!
    Sharron Eddy Cataldo

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    1. Sharron, I have some good recipes coming up!

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  3. Mmmm, both look wonderful! Any chance you can deliver both to me tomorrow here in Boston? ;)

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    1. Colleen, are you still buried in snow? Russ in in Bridgeport and as of last night, they hadn't plowed his street! 30-inches of snow!

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  4. This is what they call a Cob Salad right? Love to order it when out for dinner.Works great for the diet!.....yes I to am working on that aspect of my life too! 2 weeks and 41/2 pounds gone!..I hope i have the will power for this journey! Your blog will be most useful..Thanks CKJ

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    1. Cindy, it is a lot like a cob salad, which usually has all chopped ingredients arranged in strips on top of the lettuce, with tomatoes, chicken, egg, blue cheese, etc. That is a pretty salad too!

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  5. They both look lovely. I used to make a chicken salad very similar to your top recipe and put it in a nice big beefsteak tomato that I 'opened' up. Still one of my favorites....summertime memory moment going on here. Mmmmmmmm!

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    1. I can't wait for summer and "real" tomatoes, especially the big beefsteak tomatoes, to have with this chunky chicken salad. Summer can't come soon enough (I am NOT a winter person!). :)

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  6. These are beautiful chicken salads! I am really appreciating the recipes you are sharing and how they can be modified with different additions. This is going to inspire me to start bringing my lunch to work and not visiting the usual place at work!

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    1. Kim, I've been bringing my lunch since the beginning of January, and it's great because not only does it save money but also allows control over what/how much I'm eating! Especially like bringing good left-overs for a really nice lunch!

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  7. I think I need to make chicken salad #1 today! When you add dried cranberries, how much do you add? Same as the walnuts?

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    1. Teresa, if you're using 1 boneless breast, I'd add about a tablespoon max of cranberries, because they do have a lot of sugar. You could take half that and chop them up. My nutritionist said I could have them, but to go easy!

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    2. I made this for lunch today and it was fantastic! Thanks for the recipe!!

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    3. So glad you liked it Teresa - it's one of my favorites and packs easily for brown-bagging!

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