I was born on Capitol Hill in Washington DC. My mom, Izetta, was born in Tennessee and raised in Waterford, Virginia. My dad, Charles Irving, was born in a small town outside of Leesburg, Virginia. Most of my aunts and uncles remained in Virginia. We would drive to the country every Sunday and had wonderful Sunday dinners with relatives. My mom would help cook in their big country kitchens. Nothing says comfort like southern food and. . .good ole' hospitality is truly a southern tradition.
Saturday, August 5, 2017
CHICKEN SALAD WITH WALNUTS & GRAPES
Back in the early 1980s, I remember having chicken salad with walnuts and grapes served in a half cantaloupe, at the restaurant, The Mad Hatter, in Cape May, New Jersey. Here is my version of that recipe. I found Tuscan cantaloupes at my grocery store.
6 boneless chicken breast halves, cut each into 3 chunks
½ cup chopped walnuts
3 stalks celery, diced
½ small red onion, diced
½ cup red seedless grapes, quartered
¾ cup mayonnaise
2 t honey Dijon mustard
2 T chopped tarragon or dill (use your favorite)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Cover chicken with water and simmer in a medium saucepan for about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, add the chopped walnuts to a dry skillet and toast until lightly brown; set aside.
When chicken is finished cooking, drain and place chicken on a cutting board, to cool.
When cool, chop the chicken, and transfer to a large bowl.
Add the celery, red onion, and grapes.
In a small mixing bowl, add the mayonnaise, honey Dijon, and tarragon or dill.
Mix to combine.
When chicken is cool, add the mayonnaise ingredients and stir to combine.
Add the chopped walnuts and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Spread a little mayonnaise on multi-grain-seeded bread and add some mesclun salad mix or arugula, alfalfa sprouts or pea shoots, thinly sliced cucumber and radishes. Makes 8 sandwiches or as a salad, it serves 8.