Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Chicken Salad, the good kind, with zucchini soup!

Soup is a great way to get your veggies in while keeping things interesting, i.e. you are not just steaming vegetables every night and force-feeding them to your family. Growing up my mom covered our veggies in cheese and cream sauce because, well, it's darn tasty. I love you mom, but I just can't do that anymore!! Also, don't be afraid of making the mayo. It's easy if you pour the oil in slowly.

This recipe requires a bit of preparation on your part. For instance, I roasted a chicken on Sunday and used it for Monday's dinner. So I would make the chicken 1-3 days ahead of time while you're prepping your food for the week ;) (more on that to come in later posts).

Roast Chicken
1 4lb chicken-rinsed and patted dry
sea salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Rub sea salt and pepper all over the chicken. Rub some underneath the skin being careful not to break it, and shake some into the cavity of the chicken. That's it. Simple can be tasty too. Pop that sucker into the middle rack of the oven for about 1.5 hours. Test for doneness with a meat thermometer. Chicken is done at about 175-180 degrees. Take out of the oven and let cool. Shred half of the chicken for this recipe and leave half for meals later in the week. (You can shred it now or store whole in the fridge until you are ready to use it).

Zucchini Soup
6 medium sized zucchini-rinsed
1 large onion, chopped
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2-3 cups chicken stock
sea salt and pepper

Heat the oil over medium heat and add the zucchini and onions. Cook, covered, until VERY soft, even mushy. Add a splash of chicken stock if it begins to dry out. Then take off the heat and let sit about 5 minutes to slightly cool. Pour everything into a food processor or blender (if using a blender work in 2-3 batches). Blend well, adding the chicken stock and the rest of the ingredients. Add the stock to your preferred consistency. (You could also use coconut milk here instead of the stock. It will make more of a "cream of zucchini" type soup. Both are good). After, return to the pan and keep over low heat.

1 cup mild flavored olive oil
juice of one lemon (or equal amounts white vinegar)
1 egg yolk

Rinse out the food processor well from making the soup. Then add in the egg yolk and lemon juice or vinegar. Pulse 2-3 times to mix. Then S.L.O.W.L.Y. stream in the olive oil with the motor running. Can I emphasize slowly? I'm talking, if you could measure the thickness of the stream of oil, three times the thickness would be a 1/4 of an inch. Yes, slowly. This will ensure the mayo will thicken properly. Once you've poured in all the oil it should be at a good thickness.

1/2 cup grapes, cut in half
1/2 cup toasted almond slivers
2 cups Shredded chicken from above
1/2 recipe Mayo from above
salt and pepper
a few shakes of poppy seeds for good measure
Optional: dried, unsweetened blueberries
Mixed greens

In a bowl, stir together all of the above except for the mixed greens. Add more mayo if you feel it needs it. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, and top your plate of mixed greens with the chicken salad! Serve with a bowl of zucchini soup on the side.

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