I don't claim to be a gourmet chef, or really even a decent cook. We get by, we eat mostly healthy stuff (hubby is diabetic), but preparing food has never been one of my favorite activities. Beer and pizza is a meal that includes all of the major food groups, if you have chocolate-covered ice cream bars for dessert. (We buy the no-sugar-added kind.) I can read a recipe and follow it fairly well, but I get frustrated if I don't have all of the ingredients on hand. And I lament the amount of time spent in the kitchen preparing most meals. Don't even get me started on the cleaning up part.
Tonight, however, I prepared chicken salad, the recipe for which I got from my cousin. She worked for a caterer at one time, and they couldn't keep this chicken salad on hand. It's very basic, and it would be just like any other chicken salad in the world, except for two "surprise" ingredients. A word of warning: I won't be listing the amounts of ingredients, because I rarely use them when I'm cooking.
When I first started making this, I would cook a whole chicken, wait for it to cool, pick the meat off the bone, cut it up carefully. Screw that crap. (Pardon my language.) Now I use two large cans of white meat chicken.
Then I add some quantity of chopped walnuts. I didn't remember to take pictures until after I had dumped the walnuts on top of the chicken. Sigh.
Next I cut green seedless grapes in halves. I don't count them or measure. I just know when it looks right. When I'm feeling really gourmet I'll cut them into quarters.
First "surprise" ingredient....flaked, sweetened coconut.
Second "surprise" ingredient.....sour cream. I used the lite kind tonight, just because that's what I had.
Mayonnaise, of course. Actually, I prefer Miracle Whip, but hubby doesn't like it because he says it's too sweet. Isn't that sort of like being too pretty or too rich?
Finished product. Sometimes I'll add celery, but we rarely have that on hand. Neither one of us is crazy about it, and I refuse to buy an entire package of celery just to use one or two stalks and have the rest of it look like cooked spaghetti in a couple of weeks.
This is one of those rare dishes that hubby will actually request from time to time. (Most of his requests involve me NOT making something again.) We eat this with crackers, or if I'm feeling really gourmet or want to impress someone, I'll serve it with store-bought croissants.
I have also heard of a variation of this recipe with almonds instead of walnuts and mandarin oranges instead of grapes. I have also made it with red seedless grapes when I didn't have the green ones in the fridge.
That's it for tonight. I'm exhausted from the "cooking" and "washing up." We ate off paper plates.