Saturday, January 19, 2013

Chicken Salad w/Green Beans & Tahini-Lemon-Yogurt Dressing

It was a soup and salad kind of day, and we opted for an herby chicken salad, in which crunchy green beans take center stage. I LOVE THIS RECIPE. Ended up serving the chicken salad on Jacques Pepin's 'bread in a pot' recipe from an older issue of Edible Columbus (recipe: page 18-19; and I wrote the article about Malabar Farm on pages 30-31), alongside Cilantro-flecked Heirloom Tomato Soup, which had an ever so slight kick of pepper which complimented the chicken salad. 

Photo: Shawnie Kelley.  All rights reserved.
This colorful and tangy salad is packed with flavor, texture, and character. We eat green
beans several times a week when they are in season, and never get enough of their great
crunch, brilliant green color, and healthful, refreshing flavors.


3 tablespoons coarse sea salt
8 ounces green beans, trimmed at both ends and cut into 1- inch pieces
3 1/2 cups (about 1 pound) cubed cooked chicken (see page 197)
1 1/2 cups sliced celery (1/4- inch slices)
Tahini- Lemon- Yogurt Dressing and Dipping Sauce (page 332)
1/2 cup finely minced fresh cilantro or parsley leaves
Coarse, freshly ground black pepper

1. Prepare a large bowl of ice water.

2. Fill the pasta pot with 3 quarts of water and bring it to a rolling boil over high heat.
Add the salt and the beans and blanch until crisp- tender, about 5 minutes. (Cooking
time will vary according to the size and tenderness of the beans.) Immediately
remove the colander from the water, letting the water drain from the beans. Plunge
the beans into the ice water so they cool down as quickly as possible. (The beans will
Photo: Shawnie Kelley.  All rights reserved.
cool in 1 to 2 minutes. If you leave them longer, they will become soggy and begin
to lose flavor.) Drain the beans and wrap them in a thick kitchen towel to dry. (Store
the beans in the towel in the refrigerator for up to 4 hours.)
3. In a large bowl, combine the beans, chicken, and celery. Toss to blend. Add just
enough dressing to coat the ingredients lightly and evenly. Add the cilantro and toss
again. Taste for seasoning. At serving time, season with pepper.

WINE SUGGESTION: This salad calls for a slightly exotic wine. I never tire of the unique, spicy flavors and aromas of Austria’s flagship white wine, Grüner Veltliner.

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