Crispy Chicken Salad with Sugared Pecans, Pears & Blue Cheese

Chicken Salad

This Crispy Chicken Salad is a perfect dinner salad.  While the chicken has a mild flavor, the pecans add a perfect amount of spice and a hint of sweetness to the salad.  The blue cheese balances out the sweetness, and the pears complement the chicken salad with freshness.

This Crispy Chicken Salad makes for a great dinner.  Great for a summer dinner outside.

The pecans and dressing can be prepared in advance, making the actual preparation of the salad not too involved.  Easily accomplished while enjoying a nice glass of wine.  Just make sure not to snack too much on the pecans.  They’re addictive.

Photo Source: One More Moore

Tip: dress only the amount of lettuce that you anticipate using.  Undressed lettuce can be kept in an airtight container and any other left overs (chicken/pecans/blue cheese/pear) can be added the next day for a lunch salad.

Crispy Chicken Salad with Sugared Pecans, Pears & Blue Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs. Chicken tenders
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1/4 tsp. Pepper
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups Panko Crumbs
  • 6 tbsp. Vegetable Oil
  • 2 bags (10 oz. each) Mixed Baby Greens
  • 1 cup thinly sliced Red Onion
  • 4 Bosc Pears, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup Danish Blue Cheese, crumbled
  • Maple Pecan Dressing: recipe follows
  • Sugared Pecans: recipe follows

 

Directions:

  • Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper.
  • Place the eggs in a medium bowl.  Place the Panko in another bowl.
  • Dip the chicken first in the eggs, then in the Panko.
  • Heat the oi in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • When the oil is hot, add the chicken to the pan and cook until browned on all sides, about 6 minutes total.
  • Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
  • In a large bowl, toss the greens, onion, pears, and cheese.  Add just enough dressing to coat well.
  • Arrange greens on 6 plates.
  • Top with chicken tenders and sugared pecans.
  • Drizzle with additional dressing and pass remainder.

 

Maple Pecan Dressing
  • 1/2 cup chopped Pecans
  • 1/4 cup Maple Syrup
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp. Brown Sugar
  • 3/4 tsp. Salt
  • 1/4 tsp. Pepper
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil

Add all ingredients, except the oil, to a blender container.  Blend until well-combined.  With the motor running, slowly add oil and blend until creamy.  Transfer to a small bowl.  Cover and store in the refrigerator if making ahead of time.

 

Sugared Pecans
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. Salt
  • 1 cup Pecans, lightly toasted.

Carefully melt the sugar in a medium frying pan over medium-high heat.  Stir in the cayenne pepper, salt and pecans.   Stir until the nuts are well coated, then transfer to a plate lined with wax paper, coated with cooking spray.  When cool, break into pieces.  Store in an airtight container if making ahead of time.

Serves: 6

Enjoy!

(Recipe by: Erin Mylroie)

 

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