Spring is here, and with it, the arrival of babies, wedding showers and other festive occasions where mayonnaise seems to reign. I asked a hostess of a long-ago bridal shower for this recipe. Apparently it was so easy she just rattled it off from the top of her head, while I scratched it onto a piece of note paper. I brought it out to celebrate the arrival of a friend's newborn girl (I saw her today and she's spectacular!)
I love bringing meals to new parents. Why? First off, I received an abundant bounty of meals after both of my boys arrived home from the hospital. Second, because the afternoon we left the hospital with my second son, my mother said she and my father would be there for dinner and asked me what I was serving. Really? Just what every new mother needs to be doing. Duh, leftovers, Mom.
This dish would be perfect for any springtime gathering. It's easy to make components ahead of time and assemble it right before you need to cook it. And my apologies for only getting a shot of it before it went into the oven. My husband baked it while we were at our Cub Scout meeting and when we came in the door, it was no longer worthy of a photo.
Hot Chicken Salad Pie
Thanks to Nancy Godfrey
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes plus 20-25 minutes baking at 350 degrees
2 cups chicken breast, cooked and cubed*
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. grated onion
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1 tsp. salt
1 small jar chopped pimientos, un-drained
1 9-inch pie shell, baked
1/2 cup grated Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup crushed potato chips
To prepare, use a large mixing bowl and blend cooked chicken, celery, mayonnaise, lemon juice, grated onion, chopped pecans, pimientos and salt. Stir well to blend (you may refrigerate this covered until ready to finish the "pie.") Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake pie shell (either the pre-made ones that come in their own pan, or one that you roll out into your own pan, or even your own pie crust) about 10 minutes at 350 degrees to brown it before putting filling into it. Cool pie shell slightly and pour chicken salad mixture into the pan. Sprinkle top with cheddar cheese and then top with crushed potato chips. Bake for 20-25 minutes in a 350 degree oven until lightly browned on the top. Makes 6-8 servings.
* I am a devoted follower of Ina Garten's method of cooking chicken for chicken salad. Use split breast with the bones in. Bones add flavor that you wouldn't get with a boneless chicken breast. Salt and pepper the skin before cooking in a 350 degree oven for approximately 45 minutes (meat should reach at least 155 degrees with a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the breast). Chill cooked chicken for at least an hour in the refrigerator before attempting to remove from the bones. Remove breast meat from the bones and chop for the recipe.
|Hot Chicken Salad Pie, pre-baking|