We live in Raleigh now, and one thing I've noticed is chicken salad is way more popular here than it was in Chicago or Austin. It also seems like more people make variations on Bridesmaid Chicken Salad, which is chicken salad made with Major Grey's brand chutney. I've since scaled this recipe way down, as the original version served a crown and we are more likely to make this for 2 to 4 people. I've also lightened it a lot! Greek yogurt mixed with a little mayo works perfectly.
Bridesmaid Chicken Salad
I don’t know the origin of this recipe but it appears in a couple of my Junior League books with the title “Bridesmaid Chicken Salad”. It usually calls for pineapple plus slightly more lime juice and lime zest, but you really can taste the lime, so I like to tone that down a little. Definitely keep the lime zest and lime juice in your salad, but adjust to taste.
How to Cook the Chicken
For the chicken, just cook, cool and chop. I used to use the giant bone-in chicken breasts, sprinkle them with some Cavender’s Greek seasoning, put a pat of butter under the skin, then roast at 350 for about 50 minutes. Roast chicken on the bone has so much more flavor than boiled, but you can use whatever chicken is convenient. Roasting does take so much more time. Instant Pot chicken is much quicker.
Instant Pot Small Thawed Chicken Breast Time
The Instant Pot makes the perfect chicken for chicken salad. You may have to play around with the times somewhat, but I'll tell you exactly what times work for me. I buy the small individually packed chicken breasts that weigh about 3 ½ to 4 oz each and cook them on the trivet set over 1 cup of water. Because they are so small, they only need 4 minutes on high, 10 minutes rest and then about 10 minutes or more to rest at room temperature. If you are using larger, thicker, chicken breasts, you'll need more like 8 minutes on high, 10 minute release and resting time.
Bridesmaid Chicken Salad
- 1 ½ tablespoons good quality mayonnaise (Duke's)
- ¼ cup Greek yogurt, nonfat is okay here
- ¼ cup Major Grey’s Chutney
- ½ teaspoon curry powder you can use more or less to taste
- 1 splash fresh lime juice (around 2 teaspoons, but you can use more or less)
- ½ teaspoon fresh lime or lemon zest
- 2 cups diced cooked chicken breast, 10 oz by weight cooked from about 14 oz uncooked chicken bread
- ⅓ cup chopped celery
- ¼ cup finely chopped onions more if you like
- ½ cup sliced or slivered almonds, toasted (optional)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Mix together all ingredients in a bowl. Serve on a bed of lettuce topped with more almonds or serve as the filling of a sandwich made with good bread.