Summery goodness awaits you with this fruity chicken salad. Clad in a lighter than air creamy poppy seed dressing, you’ll be perched on the edge of a cloud swingin’ your feet with joy as you eat it. Figuratively, of course.
I was ambling through my local market recently with no food plan for the night. This is quite the unusual occurrence, but I was bumfuzzled; I couldn’t think of a single thing for dinner. It had been a busy day at the shop and I just hadn’t given food a thought. What I did know was, with as hot as it was, I wanted something light and refreshing for Mr. Saucy and me.
So, you know how stores nearly always put the produce section just as you come in the door? They really know what they are doing. The intense colors of the produce stimulate your appetite by activating your salivary glands; the fruits and vegetables give you the sense that their foods are fresh and healthy. Normally that “trick” of the grocery trade is meant to tempt you to buy items you don’t really need because you’re suddenly hungry.
On this evening, I used it as the inspiration I needed for dinner. I decided that the blackberries, raspberries and peaches I picked up would be components of a dish. I proceeded to the meat department; there they had a sale on chicken tenders and the plan came together. Chicken salad, it is!
All I needed was to figure out how I would dress the salad. You know, if you’ve been following my site, I’ve been on a mission to replace bottled dressings with homemade. And, what better dressing to go on a fruity chicken salad than a light creamy poppy seed? I had everything else I needed at home already…so, my trip to the market resulted in the purchase of some fruit and chicken and a plan for dinner. I consider this a victory.
You’ll notice I sautéed the chicken tenders in some butter. I really preferred this method because of the nice caramelization that occurs on the outer of the chicken. The little bit of fat from the butter was fine with me, since the dressing had very little. Of course, you could poach or bake the chicken tenders, or even “cheat” and buy a rotisserie chicken for this salad.
So, this is what I
hatched, no wait… that would make it a chicken pun threw together. It was delightful, summery, light and beautiful. Of course, you can put in any combination of fruits or nuts your heart desires…change them up, make it yours, but I hope you’ll try it.
ps: I’ve listed this salad in Summer Salad Sundays. Head on over there for some other great salad ideas!
- 8 chicken tenders (about 1 pound)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- kosher salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted
- 1½ cups fresh fruits (I mixed blackberries, raspberries and peach slices)
- FOR THE DRESSING:
- ½ cup Greek style yogurt, plain
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon poppy seeds
- In a small skillet, over medium heat, melt the butter.
- Lightly sprinkle the chicken tenders with kosher salt and pepper on both sides.
- Sauté the chicken tenders in the butter until lightly golden brown on each side and cooked through (about 4-6 minutes each side, depending on their size).
- Remove the cooked chicken tenders to a cutting board and allow to cool.
- Once they are cool, cut them into cubes and place them in a mixing bowl.
- Add the toasted almond slices and the fruit.
- FOR THE DRESSING:
- In a small bowl, add the yogurt, honey, lemon juice and poppy seed and stir until well mixed.
- Toss the dressing with the chicken and almonds.
- At this point, you can refrigerate to serve cold, or serve immediately, as you wish.