Thursday, May 12, 2016

Pineapple Almond Chicken Salad

     Tropical Resort Style Comfort Food! 
     Today's salad recipe is pure tropical paradise stuffed into a pineapple!  This is a nice lunch recipe for those who wish that their bare feet were in the white sands at a Caribbean resort.  Of course this is a summertime recipe, but when the weather is still icy cold in late spring, dining on tropical resort style food can brighten the day!
     Pineapple Almond Chicken Salad:
     This recipe yields 1/2 stuffed pineapple that can be shared by two guests. 
     Salade Américaine (Mayonnaise Salad) stuffed pineapples are nice casual food.  Hollowing a pineapple half is not difficult to do!
     Sliced almonds can be toasted in a 300ºF oven or they can be tossed in a dry sauté pan over medium heat.     
     Step 1:  Select 1/2 of a chicken that weighs 1 1/2 to 2 pounds.  
     Season the chicken half with sea salt and black pepper.
     Place the chicken on a roasting pan.
     Roast the chicken in a 350ºF oven till it is fully cooked.
     Step 2:  Cool the chicken to room temperature.
     Chill the roasted chicken to 41ºF in a refrigerator.
     Step 3:  Remove the skin, fat and bones.
     Large dice the chicken meat.
     Chill the diced chicken till it is needed later in the recipe.
     Step 4:  Cut 1 pineapple in half lengthwise, through the fruit and green top leaves.  Save the other half for another recipe.
     Trim the leaf tips and cut off any sharp thorny tips.
     Step 5:  Cut a thin flat spot on the skin on the side of the pineapple, so it will stand upright on a platter without rolling over.
     Step 6:  Use a paring knife to remove the pineapple fruit and make a bowl inside the pineapple half.
     Chill the pineapple bowl till it is needed.
     Step 7:  Trim the fibrous core off of the pineapple fruit that was removed when hollowing the bowl.
     Discard the pineapple core.
     Large dice the trimmed pineapple fruit.
     Chill the pineapple fruit till later in the recipe.
     Step 8:  Place the chilled diced chicken in a mixing bowl.
     Add 2 tablespoons of diced celery.
     Add 2 tablespoons of diced onion.
     Add 1 thin sliced green onion.
     Add 2 tablespoons of diced mixed green bell pepper and red bell pepper.
     Step 9:  Add the reserved chilled diced pineapple fruit from making the pineapple bowl.
     Add 1 tablespoon of chopped cilantro.
     Add 2 tablespoons of lightly toasted sliced almonds.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of minced ginger.
     Add 2 pinches of sea salt and black pepper.
     Add 1 pinch of cayenne pepper.
     Add 1 small pinch of allspice.
     Step 10:  Add 1 tablespoon of sour cream.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of Worcestershire Sauce.
     Add just enough mayonnaise to bind the salad ingredients together.  (About 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup.)
     Mix the ingredients together.
     *Adjust the seasoning with sea salt and black pepper if necessary.
     Chill the chicken salad to 41ºF in a refrigerator.  
     Step 11:  Mound the chicken salad in the carved pineapple bowl.
     Set the pineapple bowl on a serving platter.
     Sprinkle some toasted sliced almonds on top of the salad.
     Garnish the plate with lettuce leaves and pineapple spears.
     This salad is lighter tasting than it looks because of the addition of pineapple fruit.  The almonds add flavor and crunch! 

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