Thursday, May 17, 2007

Sweet Pea Blinis with Curried Chicken Salad

Perfect for a baby or wedding shower.

Chicken Salad

1 whole chicken
2 stalks celery, washed, trimmed, chopped
1/2 small red onion, peeled, chopped
Mayo (I prefer Hellmann's or Duke's) to taste
Mild curry powder to taste
Salt to taste

1) Place chicken into a large pot and cover with cold water. Cover the pot and turn heat up to high, until it boils, then turn the heat down so that the chicken is just simmering. Cook until done, 1 to 1 and 1/2 hours.

2) Once chicken is falling from the bone, remove from the cooking water, place on a large plate and allow to cool to room temp (no more than 45 minutes). Allow the cooking water, which is now a beautiful chicken stock, to cool at room temp, too then freeze (for us to 3 months) to use later. Cover the room temp chicken with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to cool completely. This may be done a day before.

3) Once chicken is cooled to the bone, remove the skin and discard. Pick the meat form the chicken, including the back (there is anough meat back there to warrant your attention). Roughly chop the meat.

4) Place the meat, celery and onion into a food processor and process until the meat is finely chopped. Transfer all to a large bowl and mix in mayo, curry powder and salt to taste. Cover and store in the fridge until ready to use. May be made up to a day before serving.

Sweet Pea Blinis
1 and 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed but not cooked
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup flour, plus more if needed

1) Place all ingredients, except flour into a food processor. Process until fairly smooth (the peas will never be completely smooth). Add flour and process until just incorporated-- do not over-work. Add more flour if necessary-- it should be the consistency of pancake batter.

2)Pre-heat a non-stick pan over medium to medium high heat (depending on your stove). Do not grease the pan. Once pan is hot, place tablespoonfuls of batter into the pan, do not over-crowd. Cook blinis until small bubbles form on the sides (just as in pancakes). Flip and continue to cook other side. Cool on a rack.
Makes 34-36 small blinis.

Assemble by placing a spoonful of chicken salad on each blini (you will have chicken salad left-over). Top each with a fresh pea. Serve cold or at room temp.

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