Tuesday, April 2, 2013

One Great . . . mango twist on chicken salad

With the weather hovering between winter and spring, I'm ready for things to eat that signal warmer weather will be here eventually.

Over the Easter weekend, I was casting around for a way to give new life to an easy dinner of chicken salad when I spied a little pullout magazine from a recent edition of Food Network magazine: "50 Salad Dressings." A mango lime dressing looked easy enough and I just happened to have a ripe mango on the counter, waiting to be used.

For the chicken salad, I added green onions, diced cucumber, a spare boiled egg from the batch bound for deviled eggs and sliced almonds. A little extra diced mango wouldn't have been out of place. On a bed of tender spring lettuce, it was a lovely dinner without the fat of a  mayo-bound salad.

Mango-Lime Chicken Salad
Adapted from Food Network magazine.

2 to 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1/2 cup peeled, diced cucumber
1 or 2 green onions, diced (white and tender green parts)
1 hard-cooked egg, peeled and diced
About 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
Lettuce leaves for serving (optional)
1 mango, peeled and cut away from the pit
Zest and juice of 1 lime
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil

PLACE chicken breasts in a skillet with just enough water to cover. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook about 10 minutes, until cooked through. Set aside until cool enough to handle. Cut chicken breasts into bite-size pieces.
COMBINE  chicken with cucumber, green onion, diced egg and almonds. Toss to mix well. Add about 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup Mango-Lime Dressing and stir to mix well. Serve on a lettuce leaf drizzled with a little more dressing.
DRESSING: Combine mango, lime zest and juice, Dijon, sugar and salt in a blender. Pulse until pureed. Using feed tube with motor running, slowly blend in vinegar and oil until dressing is thick. Use some on chicken salad and refrigerate the rest for up to 3 days.
YIELD: 4 to 6 servings.