I’m on quite the “picnic” theme here lately. Not that I’m complaining. I love picnic food, and the fact that the weather has been so superbly beautiful, it has me wanting to make more and more BBQ-style food. I’m sure I will get sick of it sooner or later; and once September rolls around, I’m sure I’ll feel the need to start putting out some heartier, heavier recipes. For the time being, I am more than content to keep making my favorite summer-time dishes. Our herbs are growing out of control. Not that I’m complaining about this either, but the need to use them before they go bad has me overwhelmed! Only I would get overwhelmed at the influx of herb growth. Getting to the point, we decided to make a super “herby” chicken salad. With rosemary, thyme and thai basil, the flavors taste like Spring, literally. They are fresh and exhilarating and have you wanting more and more! These chicken salad sandwiches, in every sense of the word, are supremely herbaceous.
I make chicken salad a lot, but never have I ever made a chicken salad where the main components are herbs. Thai basil has to be one of my favorite herbs ever. It so often gets overlooked, and this makes me super sad. Spicier than your typical Italian sweet basil, it can be overwhelming in taste. Be sure to use it in moderation, or everything you eat for the next 3 days will taste like thai basil. Trust me. It’s happened before, and it will happen again. The sky is the limit in creativity while making this chicken salad. Use what you have on hand. If you are growing your own herbs (which I totally recommend because it’s so much fun!), use what is ready to be harvested. You don’t have to use the same herbs as I did. Get creative! I’m sure it will taste delicious any way you slice it.
I’m perfectly aware that I have paired with The Bruery’s Tradewinds Tripel before. You don’t need to remind me =). I’m quite confident that I will pair it with something else in the near future too. This is how much I love this beer. I don’t think I need to go into detail as to why. Well ok, if you insist. This beer is brewed with Thai basil! So duh! I had to pair it. It’s the perfect amount of thai basil too. This beer really compliments these sandwiches. It’s also a great spring/summer brew. Extremely refreshing and satisfying.
I think it’s time to head to the pool. It’s such a beautiful day that shouldn’t be wasted inside!
Have a great day everyone!
This chicken salad goes out of control with homegrown herbs. Try it out for your next picnic! These little guys travel so well.
- 4 boneless chicken thighs
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 3 clove of garlic, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 1 teaspoon black pepper, divided
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise, store-bought
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 stalk of celery, diced
- 1 small shallot, finely diced
- 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme, finely chopped
- 5 thai basil leaves, finely chopped
- 1 baguette loaf, cut into 5 equal piece
- 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
- In a gallon-sized bag (one that zips), combine the thighs, olive oil, white wine vinegar, garlic and a dash of salt and pepper. Seal the bag, released any air, and massage the ingredients together. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
- Preheat your grill to medium-high. Grill your chicken thighs, 5 minutes on each side, until fully cooked through. Remove from the grill and transfer to the refrigerator to cool.
- While your chicken is cooling, prepare your dressing. Combine the mayo, mustard, cayenne and another dash of salt and pepper in a bowl. Whisk to combine. To the dressing, add the celery, shallot, rosemary, thyme, and thai basil. Fold together with a rubber spatula and adjust the seasoning to taste. Cube your chicken into 1/4 - 1/2 inch bite sized pieces. Add the chicken to the dressing/salad mixture. Again, fold the ingredients together.
- Slice your baguette "rolls" and line each one with a layer of spinach leaves. Spoon a couple of tablespoons of chicken salad into each roll and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Hardware: * Gallon-Sized Bag * Measuring Cups * Measuring Spoons * Cutting Board * Sharp Knife * Bowls * Whisk * Rubber Spatula *