Saturday, October 17, 2009

Chicken Salad for a VIP Luncheon

Yesterday, we had special company for lunch - our daughter and four-week-old grandson! I am really enjoying the time she has left on her maternity leave and the time we've been able to spend together. Since she's still trying to loose a little pregnancy weight, I wanted to make something light and healthy. This recipe was shared by a good friend who makes it for all of the new mothers that she knows. The recipe came from a collection of recipes from a local school.

It's full of good things like broccoli, pea pods, fresh spinach and wild rice.

The dressing is Asian-inspired and delicious.

The other bonus I get out of making lunch for my daughter is getting to hold my Little Mack...he was all ready for the Wisconsin Badger game today ;)

University School Chicken Salad
Printable Recipe

Serves 6

6 bone-in chicken breasts cooked and cut into cubes (see below)
1 cup cooked white rice
2 cups cooked wild rice
½ cup celery, sliced diagonally
½ cup chopped green onion
2/3 cup red pepper, sliced
1/3 cup water chestnuts, sliced
1 cup broccoli flowerets, blanched
1 cup fresh pea pods, cut into bite-sized pieces and blanched
3 cups cleaned, fresh spinach, cut into thin strips

Toasted sliced almonds (optional)


1 cup olive oil
½ cup white wine vinegar
1 ½ tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon grated ginger
3 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
2 tablespoons sugar
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350. Rub a little olive oil over each chicken breast, sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast in oven for about 40 minutes until cooked through but still moist. Cool, remove skin and bones and cut into cubes. Refrigerate until ready to toss salad.

Bring a pot of salted water to boil. Add broccoli and blanch for about 2 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and place in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain. Bring the water to a boil again, add pea pods and cook for 1 minute. Remove the pea pods and put into the ice water bath to stop the cooking. Drain.

Whisk the dressing ingredients together.

In a large mixing bowl, add all of the salad ingredients and toss with the dressing. Chill until ready to serve.

Serve on a bed of mixed greens. Sprinkle with toasted almonds, if desired.


  1. This looks really good and what special guests!

  2. Susan, where did you find fresh pea pods this time of year? Do you think frozen ones would work? I have everything except the water chestnuts, if frozen pea pods will work, but could run to the store to get them. I like recipes that have lots of vegetables mixed in...can't wait to try it.

    Little Mack is adorable in his Badger outfit! He looks so contented.

  3. I'm saving the recipe and his little face:) Sending it to my daughters also:)

    The recipe sounds DELISH!!

    And I have to tell you I think little Mack is ADORABLE.
    Isn't it just the best?:)

  4. Thanks, Martha :)

    Hi Mimi! We are lucky to have a great grocery store nearby and they always have them. I do think frozen would work just fine - just omit the blanching stage.

    Monique, I hope your DDs enjoy the recipe. I knew you'd like the Asian-inspired part too ;)

  5. Susan, you have the best lunch guests. :) ... I'm sure Lindsay appreciated the healthy lunch and the opportunity to let Mack spend time with his Nana. ... What a darling little badger fan ... Hope his team does well.

  6. Oh you are such a devoted granny!! The salad us indeed healthy.... Most adorable little Mack!!!!!!

  7. That salad is lovely- and colorful. It looks so pretty sitting in that shell of ruby red lettuce. Chock full of good and tasty ingredients and I love the asian inspired dressing. I know how you feel about grandchildren- I adore mine. Only wish they lived nearby. :(

  8. Mack is precious!!! I'm awaiting my third grandchild is a few weeks and am so excited.

    Thanks for sharing the recipe - can't wait to try it out.

  9. What a wonderful little boy ! ANd what a nice salad too ... I don't know any new mother but I'm sure it will be OK for me and my two old (14 and 16 ... very very old compared with little Mack ! ) boys !
    Have a very nice day

  10. Great looking lunch, Susan! The guest of honor is adorable!

  11. Oh Susan, baby Mack is so adorable!

    The recipe looks divine, I hope to make it soon.

    Thank you for sharing the recipe and a glimpse of your precious grandson. :) xo

  12. He is adorable and your recipe looks so good and I am so hungry right now....

  13. Oh that looks so good. Thanks for the recipe. Sharon

  14. He is a DOLL! Oh, and the salad looks great too! ;-)


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