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Curried Chicken Salad with Crisp Green Apples and Soft Raisins

Mariel here. Lately I’ve been highly suggestible when it comes to food ideas. I trotted past a Dunkin’ Donuts ad for their new Tuna Fish Croissant and, BLAMMO, that’s all I wanted for dinner. After fielding a question from a reader about our Penne alla Vodka, I just had to remake it myself. So the Super Bowl was pretty much a nightmare for me – other than the G-Men winning – since I was assaulted with one ridiculous food-porny shot after another.

What inspired this little dish, wasn’t an on-air advertisement, but a walking-talking human being. This past weekend, I headed down to balmy Palm Beach to celebrate my best friend’s bachelorette party. It was a lovely time and so good to see my buddy – she lives in Charlotte, I in NY, so rendezvouses don’t happen nearly as often as we’d like – and the weekend whipped by in a whirlwind of SoCo Limes and leisurely brunches.

So where does the Curried Chicken Salad come in? On our first afternoon down in FLA, my buddy and I sidled up to an al fresco brunch spot and plunked down in need of a post-flight meal. For some reason, whenever I’m with this particular friend, I always seem to find myself ordering Curried Chicken Salad. This is no exaggeration, I’ll go months without eating this deli delight and then the two of us cats get together and the universe conspires – for unknown reasons – to tempt me with mayo. So yeah. I had some more Curried Chicken Salad this weekend, a lot of it.

When I returned home from the trip, I decided I needn’t wait till I see her next to get curried, so I whipped up a batch at home and have been enjoying the leftovers all week. This is a heck of a lot lighter than what you’ll find at your local deli (namely b/c I don’t drown it in mayo and the stuff that’s in there is “light”), so it’s decidedly guilt-free. Recipes don’t come much easier so keep this in your back pocket for when you’re scratching your head over what to eat. Enjoy!

Not a fan of curry? Check out my mom’s Chunky Chicken Salad with Cherries and Walnuts.

Curried Chicken Salad with Green Apples and Raisins
Serves 4

Ingredients:
1-lb chicken tenders (I use tenders b/c they poach faster than breasts, but those will work too, just increase the poaching time) – $4.49
½-cup finely chopped sweet onion – $0.89
½-cup raisins – $2.19
1 small Granny Smith apple, coarsely chopped – $$1.00
½-cup light mayo (you can also use plain or greek yogurt) – stock
¾-teaspoon curry powder – stock
¼-teaspoon salt – stock
Freshly ground black pepper – stock
Grand total assuming “well-stocked” kitchen: $8.57
Cost per serving: $2.14

Directions:
1. Place chicken in a large saucepan and pour in just enough water or chicken stock to cover the meat. Bring to a boil over high heat, then seal tightly with a lid, remove from heat and let stand for 10 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink inside. Don’t let it sit too long though, it’ll become rubbery. It should be tender. Remove the chicken from the water and let cool on a plate.

2. In a large bowl, toss the onions, green apple and raisins. Chop the poached chicken and add to the mix.

3. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayo, salt, pepper and curry powder. Combine the mayo with chicken mixture and make sure everything is coated evenly.

4. Serve on a bed of greens, multigrain bread or all by its lonesome!