No Mayo Chicken Salad with Lots of Lemon
One of my most favorite things my mom ever made for me growing up was chicken salad. It was made with chicken from a can, Miracle Whip, celery, and lots of salt and pepper. She always shredded it so fine and piled it high between two slices of warm toasted bread, crisp iceberg lettuce and a slathering of some mayonnaise product. I lived for this. It was one of the first things I learned how to "make" haha, and I'd make it all the time in college.
Speaking of college, chicken salad became a staple hangover cure thanks to an ex boyfriend's mom, who owned a deli, and would bring us delicious chicken salad in warm pita pockets with sweet tea. Her secret to the chicken salad? SUGAR. I dream of that meal when I'm hungover, haha.
Anyway, since it's still one of my favorite things to eat, I like to play around with different flavor combinations. This version is light and mayo free - perfect for the summer. I marinate chicken breasts with lots of lemon juice and Greek seasoning before searing it in a hot cast iron skillet for seven minutes per side. Let the chicken cool completely before shredding it by hand. I swear shredding it by hand makes it taste better and the rough edges of the hand torn chicken soaks up all the yummy dressing more effectively. Take this for lunch and reminisce about childhood for a mini mental vacation.
Lemony Summery Chicken Salad
Hangry Timer: 25 minutes
What you need:
3 Persian Cucumbers, deseeded, cut into half moons
3 Celery stalks, diced
Celery Leaves, picked from the celery you bought
2 Scallions, chopped
5 Mint leaves, chiffonade
3 Chicken Breasts, cooked and shredded*
1 large Lemon, juiced
3 Tbsp. Olive Oil
What to do with it:
Combine the lemon juice, olive oil, a big pinch of salt and two grinds of fresh pepper in a jar. Shake until combined. Add a squirt of mustard if you're feeling sassy!
Put everything else in a big bowl with a lid, pour the dressing over and toss to combine. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as needed. Serve immediately or store in the fridge so all of the flavors combine. Top with sriracha for some heat just before digging in!
*I marinate my chicken in the juice of one lemon per breast (so three lemons, juiced), a glug of oil, dried oregano, and a big sprinkle of Cavendar's Green seasoning. Add a little salt and let marinate on each side for 15 minutes before grilling or pan searing. You can also used canned chicken (no judgement here!), boiled, or baked - however you like to git 'er done! Hell, use a rotisserie if that makes you happy!
Miss Twinkle T★es LOVES chicken salad