Accidental Chicken Salad


Post by community member:

citr 1

I had a very unfortunate incident occur that wound up being the impetus for chicken salad. I was roasting TWO chickens for a nice big dinner. Sooo, I put TWO whole chickens in my big ol’ cast iron Dutch oven. (I never know if Dutch is supposed to be capitalized here. I capitalize out of respect for all things Dutch and dutch.) I seasoned them up real good, put the top on, placed them in at 350 degrees. I wanted to cook them at 350 for one hour, then turn the oven off and leave them be in the hot oven until we were ready for the golden roasted birds. In the midst of all this bird cooking, our electricity flickered off just enough to turn off my oven. Instead of TWO golden roasted birds, we had TWO partially roasted, white-skinned birds. Fortunately, I had enough food for us to eat without the birds. I finished cooking them and finally got them into the fridge about 10:30 that night.

I don’t mind having a lot of roasted chicken. It’s one of my favorite things to eat. However, TWO chickens are a lot for two people to eat. My son’s home from college but he has decided he doesn’t like chicken. Says we burned him out on it. So, it’s just Sam and me, for the most part. That works out to about one chicken per person if I did my math right. And, my husband isn’t excited about eating leftovers. I, on the other hand, think leftovers are God’s gift to tired cooks. I love cold roasted chicken and leftover roasted chicken re-purposed a thousand different ways. This sounds like a perfect time for chicken salad.

Like most things I cook now days, I think less is more. I like simplicity. So, my chicken salad is very simple and basic. I’ve tried all different ways of dressing it up and making it more gourmet. I’ve come right back to the way my Granny and Mama made it. It’s so simple you don’t really need a recipe. Just a good taste tester.

If you start off with excellent cooked chicken, you will wind up with excellent chicken salad. I do like to roast my chicken for chicken salad. Since we already established that I am the proud owner of TWO golden roasted chickens, I am home free.

How to make Chicken Salad Stuffed Tomatoes:

Pull the chicken off the bone and either shred or chop. Try to keep from eating as much of it as you possibly can. My husband irritates the daylights out of me every Thanksgiving. He carves the turkey and while he’s carving, he’s getting my stockpot ready for turkey stock by throwing in the turkey carcass and skin. This means he picks the turkey clean before we sit down to Thanksgiving Dinner. This means he eats about 1/3 of a 20 pound turkey before we sit down to Thanksgiving Dinner. This means he is full as a tick before we sit down to Thanksgiving Dinner that I have spent the past THREE days preparing. Place your pulled/chopped chicken in a pretty bowl and hope that you left enough from a whole chicken to make a decent bowl of chicken salad.

citr 2

All you need now is good quality mayonnaise (I use Duke’s–it’s one of my FAVORITES), sweet pickle relish, salt and pepper. To this amount of chicken, which is roughly 4 cups, I added between 1/2 to 3/4 cup mayonnaise and about 1/4 cup sweet pickle relish. Mix well and add salt and pepper to taste. I think chicken salad needs a good bit of pepper. Keep mixing, stirring, adding mayo, pickle relish and seasoning until you get it right.

I want to stuff a tomato with chicken salad for my lunch today. I happened to have a ripe Big Boy.

citr 3

I’m not being prideful for I know that is a sin. I’m just stating a fact. I picked a Big Boy tomato off my tomato plant in the backyard. I’m not being prideful, I swear.

Cut the tomato in half.

citr 4

Scoop out the insides with a spoon.

citr 5

Season your tomato. How else is it going to be good if you don’t season it? I use sea salt and fresh ground black pepper.

citr 6

I like to halve the tomato instead of keeping it whole and scooping out the center. I think you get a better chicken salad to tomato ratio that way (read: you can glop on more chicken salad).

citr 7

Land some whole grain saltine crackers and pickles on your plate. Enjoy your lunch!

Get the handy print page and save this to your recipe box here:
Chicken Salad Stuffed Tomatoes.

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  1. Kenya Cook says:

    So funny! I just finished my lunch and sat down to read. Guess what I had for lunch and guess what you posted? Chicken salad! I had leftover grilled chicken. I use mayo, chopped apples, pecans and a few sunflower seeds. No tomatoes, so I stuffed mine inside a whole wheat pita. Your tomato looks delish! Great summer recipe, thanks for sharing.

  2. Joyce says:

    The chicken salad sounds lovely but how could you bear to scoop the inside out of the tomato?. We don’t even have any blooming plants yet, and when we do have the earliest tomatoes I always feel as if they should be put on a pedestal or something.

  3. Robin from Rurification says:

    Yum! The perfect hot weather food!

  4. Sherie says:

    That looks so yummy . . . AND – I have TOMATO EnVY!!!!

  5. GrannyTrace says:

    I am trying not to eat bread and what a wonderful idea. Never thought to scoop out tomato.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Granny Trace

  6. djbrown says:

    John is not a big fan of chicken salad, but for a change, I am home and husband is gone all day. I have 2 nice size pieces of leftover chicken in the fridge… I’m thinking lunch is set. Thank YOU!!

  7. Julia says:

    Your approach to chicken salad is a lot like mine: add the salad stuff till it tastes right. But my chicken salad has to have at least one hard boiled egg in it.

    Anyway… Roasting chickens. Tell us more about your method. Cast iron dutch oven, huh? Do you grease it or prepare the pot in any way? Preheat the oven to 350, right? Whole chicken? Season it, put it in the pot, put the lid on, bake for 1 hour, then turn oven off? Does it hurt anything to lift the lid and peek? Can you eat it right then, or does it need that additional time in the oven? If you don’t want to eat it right then, how long can you safely leave it?



  8. Anita says:

    I am so overcome with tomato envy. Here in my part of WV we don’t even plant tomatoes until June. Of course I tend to have tomatoes left past the first frost in October.

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