Fancy Tea Sandwiches, Three Chicken Salads

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Those of you who are not vegetarian, raise your hands if you do not like chicken salad sandwiches! In my life as a personal chef and caterer, I can’t tell you how many different kinds of chicken salad sandwiches I have made! I love them all but have narrowed it down to only three. It was like being a judge on American Idol! The easiest way to cook the chicken is to season bone-in chicken breasts, place on a rack & bake in a 400 F oven for approximately 30 minutes, or until the juices run clear. Cool the chicken, chill overnight and remove the skin before chopping up. Three medium sized chicken breast halves will give you about 2 cups of chopped chicken.

DSC_3417 nx2Chicken Salad Filling With Olives:

Makes Approximately 4 Sandwiches

8 slices of square sandwich bread, s1iced regular
1 ½ cups finely chopped cooked chicken breast
1/3 cup finely chopped celery
¼ cup chopped chives or 2 Tbsp. minced green onions
¼ cup chopped pimento stuffed Manzanilla olives
2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley
Salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
Approximately 1/3 cup Mayonnaise (lite or regular)
Unsalted butter, softened so that it’s easy to spread

Make the Filling:

Place the chicken in a large bowl; add the chives or green onions, olives, parsley, salt & pepper; adding enough mayonnaise to make a creamy but not sloppy mixture. Cover & chill until ready to assemble the sandwiches.

Butter the bread, divide the mixture between four slices of bread; cover with remaining bread slices & place on a wax paper lined rimmed baking sheet, cover with wax paper & a damp tea towel & chill for at least 1 hour. Remove from the fridge when ready to assemble you sandwich trays; trim the crusts & cut each sandwich into rectangles.

Lemon-Tarragon Chicken Salad Filling:

I think this filling is lovely in the spring when the tarragon comes up in the garden. A bit of arugula might also be a nice touch.

Makes Approximately 6 Sandwiches

12 slices square bread, sliced regular
2 ½ cups finely cooked, finely chopped chicken breast
½ cup finely chopped celery
Approximately ½ cup mayonnaise (lite or regular)
¼ cup finely chopped chives
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh tarragon
1 ½ tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste
1 tsp. finely grated lemon peel (a microplane does a great job)
Salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
Unsalted butter, softened until it’s very easy to spread

Make the Filling:

Place the chicken in a large bowl; add the celery, chives, tarragon, lemon juice & rind; mix in the mayonnaise until you have a creamy mixture, adding more if necessary; season to taste with salt & freshly ground black pepper. Cover & chill until ready to assemble the sandwiches.

Make the Sandwiches:

Butter the bread, divide the mixture between four slices of bread; cover with remaining bread slices & place on a wax paper lined rimmed baking sheet, cover with wax paper & a damp tea towel & chill for at least 1 hour. Remove from the fridge when ready to assemble you sandwich trays; trim the crusts & cut each sandwich into rectangles.

Curried Chicken Salad Filling:

Curry adds a nice touch to this filling and adds a bit of a different dimension to a sandwich tray.

Makes Enough Filling For 6 Sandwiches

12 slices square bread, sliced regular
2 ½ cups finely chopped cooked chicken breast
3 – 4 Tbsp. mayonnaise (lite or regular)
3 – 4 Tbsp. yogurt
2 – 4 Tbsp. mango chutney, to taste
1 tsp. curry powder
½ an apple, cored & chopped into small dice
2 Tbsp. raisins or currants
Salt to taste
Unsalted butter, softened until it is very easy to spread

Make the Filling:

Combine the mayonnaise, yogurt & chutney in a small bowl.

Place the chicken in a large bowl, add the curry powder, apple & raisins, mix in the mayonnaise mixture until you have a creamy but not sloppy mixture; adding more mayonnaise, yogurt & chutney if necessary.
Cover & chill the filling until ready to assemble the sandwiches.

Make the Sandwiches:

Butter the bread, divide the mixture between six slices of bread; cover with remaining bread slices & place on a wax paper lined rimmed baking sheet, cover with wax paper & a damp tea towel & chill for at least 1 hour. Remove from the fridge when ready to assemble you sandwich trays; trim the crusts & cut each sandwich into rectangles.

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