Meal ruts are something that haunts us all. But I'm here to tell you they aren't all bad. Sometimes you can fall into a rut that actually lets you explore new things or rediscover old loves. This recipe is a perfect example of just that.
During the summer months, one of my favorite things to plan for suppers is a tasty, light, but still filling sandwich. Something easy for me after I've spent a hot day in the sun, but will still satisfy my boys when they are starving. See, this time of year, they both wait until after Taekwondo to eat supper, so it's not until about 8pm. I don't mind. I can't blame them. Who wants to eat at 4:30 when it's still 90 degrees outside and then go do a hard work out for 2 hours? Not me. It wouldn't be pretty.
But while I don't mind if they wait until they get home to eat (And I usually wait to eat with them) I don't want huge meals to be sitting in our stomachs just a few hours later when we head to bed. So simple sandwiches with simple sides that are refreshing and delicious are perfect. So, about once a week now I'm serving up some version of a "salad sandwich." I've been through my Tuna Salad and my Lemon Basil Chicken Salad. And next up, is a classic that I've actually been making for years, and is time to bring back to EMM. (After all, the last time I blogged this, only my mom was reading...ha ha)
Serve it on toast, croissants, buns, bread, rolls, with crackers...any way you want. It's going to be simple and yummy every. single. time. If you prefer white meat, go ahead and use boneless chicken breasts or tenderloins, but I have to admit I think the dark meat gives it a richer flavor. But I'm never going to know if you use white, so go ahead. And if you've never made chicken salad with roasted chicken, expect to be floored!! It stays moist, juicy and oh so flavorful.
If you're looking for a light summer supper, a great weekend brunch dish, or even an idea for your next picnic, jot this one down and pick up some chicken on sale this week!
Apple Pecan Chicken Salad
1 1/2 lbs. boneless chicken thighs, any fat trimmed away
2 red delicious apples, cored and diced
1 c. chopped pecans
3 ribs celery, diced
3/4 c. mayo
1 TBS lemon juice
Salt and Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350. Coat chicken with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place in baking sheet and roast for 30-45 minutes until juices run clear. Remove and allow to cool for a few minutes. Shred with 2 forks, or using stand mixer.
When chicken is completely cool, add apple, pecans, and celery. Mix well. In a small bowl whisk together mayo, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Add to chicken mixture. Stir well. Chill at least an hour before serving. I like to serve this on some crusty dinner rolls. Cut each roll on 3 sides, forming a pocket. Spoon chicken salad into pocket. For parties, serve salad and rolls separately.