Tarragon Chicken Salad with Almonds & Champagne Grapes
This is the most elegant and easy chicken salad you'll ever make .
This recipe has all those classic chicken salad flavors, but features a most special ingredient: champagne grapes. These teeny, tiny grapes are not always easy to find, and certainly not year-round. When you can find these beautiful, baby grapes you'll want to buy them and prepare a big batch of this recipe. Since the champagne grapes are so small, they require no prep work like conventional red grapes, which should be halved before going in a chicken salad (incidentally, that's the precise substitution should you not be able to source champagne grapes). The best part is that they burst in your mouth at every bite, petite juicy orbs of sweetness. Tarragon and toasted sliced almonds also add to the deliciousness. A very good recipe.
Equipment: cutting board; chef’s knife; saucepan; tongs; large mixing bowl; dry measuring cups; measuring spoons; rubber spatula
1 pound boneless chicken breast 1/3 cup mayonnaise 1 tablespoon orange juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon 1 cup champagne grapes
¼ cup sliced almonds, toasted kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1. To poach the chicken, place the breasts in a medium saucepan. Cover with cold water, and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Lower the heat and cover. Poach the chicken for 15 minutes or until firm to the touch. Remove the chicken from the liquid and cool for 20 minutes on a cutting board. Then cut the chicken into ½-inch dice.
“The chicken can be poached up to several days in advance. Alternatively, use leftover chicken (white or dark meat) from a roasted whole bird, chicken soup, etc. ”
2. In a mixing bowl, combine the mayonnaise, orange juice, and tarragon. Add the chicken, grapes, and almonds. Season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix gently until combined. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Makes 4 servings.
"Toasting the almonds releases the nut's oils, which in turn unlocks all that delicious flavor. It also looks beautiful. Reserve a pinch full of toasted nuts to garnish the dish, along with fresh tarragon sprigs and small bunches of grapes."