Saturday, June 12, 2010

Herb Chicken Salad with Warm Whole Wheat Biscuits

So what do you do when a recipe goes terribly wrong? You eat it and write about it anyway!  Everything about this next set of recipes called out to me.  The simplicity of it….The freshness of it and the comfort of it….  Gosh, I gave it the old college try, but it didn’t come out the way I wanted it too….. I think here’s why…

I found these recipes in the “Gardeners’ Community Cookbook”, I have used this cookbook before. It was most recently seen in the post “Sweet Potato Pound Cake”.   I told you I love this cookbook.  Well, I thought I would invite my mother to lunch.  She did say she would be happy becoming one of my guinea pigs.  I had to be to work in two hours and that would be plenty of time for me to whip up this simple satisfying lunch. 

  All of the recipes were meant to go together.  In the cookbook they are all plated together and it does work.  The “Herb Chicken Salad” recipe called my name as soon as I saw it on paper.  All it entails is sautéing the chicken breasts in olive oil and while they are cooking you make the rest of the meal.  I had most of the ingredients on hand for the chicken salad and for its partner on the plate… The Whole Wheat Biscuits…..The chicken salad turned out lovely, but the making of the biscuits was when it all went down hill from there.

I measured every ingredient I was supposed to.  I even sifted the all of the dry ingredients together. (A step I usually skip).  I mixed the wet with the dry and made the dough into a small ball, on a floured counter top.  Small ball….. Really small ball…..The directions said it would make enough for 12 biscuits at 1-inch think and about 3 inches across.  The biscuit dough made enough for one biscuit.  That’s it, just one.  I wish I had gotten a picture of how small this ball was, but I was too busy stomping around in the kitchen, while I was running out of time to take any pictures. 

I think I fixed the problem, aside from there not being enough dough to make enough for two people.  I made another batch, added some extra milk and olive oil. (Not only was the dough extremely not there, but it was really dry), I was able to salvage enough to make 7 biscuits.  I baked them as directed and they turned out ok.  Not great, just ok.  They would have been better with an egg wash for more color and they seemed a bit dense on the palate, but they tasted ok.

I definitely recommend making this recipe.  I have doubled all the ingredients from the original whole wheat biscuit recipe.  Don’t be lazy and not make the green salad that goes along with this recipe, it is fantastic!  I used an apple infused balsamic vinegar for the vinaigrette and it went perfectly with the herbiness of the chicken salad.  If you don’t want to make the whole wheat biscuits, croissants would be a nice substitution.

Herbed Chicken Salad with Whole Wheat Biscuits

1 Tbs. olive oil 3
3 large or 4 small boneless skinless chicken breasts halves (about 1 ¼ lbs)
12 Whole Wheat Biscuits, warm (recipe follows)
¼ cup plain yogurt
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tsp Dijon mustard
¼ cup chopped fresh basil
2 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley
3 green onions, trimmed and thinly sliced
¼ tsp salt
2 cups Herb Leaf Salad (recipe follows)

Heat the oil in a skillet and sauté the chicken breasts over medium-high heat, turning once, until cooked through, about 10 minutes.  Remove and cool the breasts, then place in the refrigerator to chill slightly.

While the chicken breasts are chilling make the biscuits.

When ready to serve, tear the chicken into large pieces.  Combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, mustard, basil, parsley, green onions, and salt in a large bowl.  Whisk to mix, then stir in the chicken.

Arrange the chicken on individual plates or on a large platter.  Surround with the Herb Leaf Salad, if using, serve, accompanied by a basket of warm biscuits.  I made it sandwich style serving the chicken salad on the warm biscuits.

Whole Wheat Biscuits

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
 3 tsp sugar
½ tsp salt
4 Tbs. olive oil
2/3 cup milk
Extra all-purpose flour, for kneading

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl.  Stir together the oil and milk and add gradually to the dry ingredients to make a soft dough.  Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and, with floured hands, knead for 6 turns.

Roll out the dough to 1-inch thick.  Cut into approximately 3-inch circles with a biscuit cutter, wide-mouth glass, or a knife.

Transfer the circles to the baking sheet and bake until golden, about 12 minutes.  Serve right away or soon, while they are still warm. 

Herb Leaf Salad

2 cups herb leaves ( I just used a mesclun mix of greens)
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp fruity vinegar ( I used a red apple infused balsamic vinegar)
1 tsp oil

Place the herbs in a bowl.  Sprinkle on the salt, then the vinegar, and toss.  Drizzle the olive oil over the top and serve right away.


  1. It can be scary and exciting making an unknown recipe but it shows your strength in the kitchen when you are able to salvage a potential mishap! Well done, your Herb Chicken Salad with Warm Wheat Biscuit looks absolutely gorgeous and I bet your mum was glad she came around for lunch! I will definitely try it :)

  2. Well at least you didn't have to get the vaccum out to clean up the glass that broke! So frustration when the recipes don't make as much as they say. -A-