Thursday, October 14, 2010

Skinny Chicken Waldorf Salad

This time of year back home is simply stunning: cooler weather, the turning of the leaves, window fronts colored in warm, inviting hues... ::sigh:: With temperatures still in the low to mid-80s, the calendar and stateside friends' Facebook posts are the only things that have indicated the arrival of autumn.

After a fantastically long holiday weekend, my "Menu-Planning Monday" commenced (a little off schedule) on Wednesday morning. Since I've been craving anything fall, I decided to pick some things this week that reminded me of home: apples, pumpkins, butternut squash, and the crock pot!

Now, I'd never actually prepared butternut squash -- until yesterday. (I'll share my yummy soup recipe soon.) Since I didn't know quite what I was getting in to, I decided I should have a quickie/easy salad to go with the soup (in case it took longer than anticipated). Am I glad I did - it was just as yummy as the soup!

This recipe came from SkinnyTaste, a blog I discovered while menu-planning this week. (Good luck peeling your eyes away from all the fantastic food photos!) This salad is just as rich in texture as it is in flavor. I love a crunchy, hearty salad and this meets that requirement.

If you have leftovers, try using them in a pita, wrap, or croissant the next day.

Ingredients:

  • 7 oz (1 breast) poached chicken breast (recipe follows) **Note: I used two breasts while I was at - why not?)
  • 2 C fat free chicken broth
  • 1 medium apple, peeled and cut into small cubes (I used Granny Smith) **I plan to double this next time.
  • 1 C red seedless grapes, cut in half **Again, I'll double this next time.
  • 1/2 C celery, chopped
  • 1/4 C light Hellman's mayonnaise **I'm a MiracleWhip girl 'til the end!
  • 2 tbsp fat free Greek yogurt
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp pecans or walnuts **All measurements went out the window here. I loaded up on pecans!
  • 6 C mixed baby greens like spinach and arugula
Directions to Poach Chicken Breast(s):
  1. Cover chicken breast(s) in broth in a small pot. Add water if it doesn't cover the chicken. 
  2. Add salt and pepper, a piece (or two) of (*not part of original recipe, but I use: chopped) celery and its leaves (you could add herbs like parsley, garlic, onion, or whatever you want) and bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce to a simmer and cook 5 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat, cover tight and let sit for 15-20 minutes or until thickest part of the breast registers 160 degrees. Chicken will be cooked through.
  5. Let it cool and cut into small cubes.
Directions to Prepare Salad:
  1. Combine mayo, yogurt, salt, pepper, and mix well. 
  2. Add chicken, grapes, apples, celery, and let it chill in the refrigerator until you are ready to eat it.
  3. Mix in pecans right before serving. 
  4. Serve over baby greens.
Et voila!

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