I've learned not to be surprised that Anna Pump's recipes never fail to please. Here's yet another one from "Summer on a Plate".
Anna's combination of gently poached chicken, celery, thin slivers of red onion, fresh basil, seedless grapes and the creamy salty dressing with a touch of sugar is brilliant.
I think some toasted nuts; perhaps pecans, walnuts, or cashews would also be right at home with this combination. It would be very attractive and delicious served in a cantaloup half, too.
I have no hesitation recommending this refreshing recipe.
Chicken in Basil Cream
Adapted from "Summer on a Plate" by Anna Pump
Recipe yields 4 servings
Anna explains that this is another of her customer's favorites; and when doubled it can easily serve 8.
Note: I used one very large chicken breast half, which made two nice size servings.
The chicken mix
2 large whole chicken breasts (about 2 pounds,) skinned & bones removed
1/2 red onion, very thinly sliced
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1 1/2 cups seedless green grapes; halved
For the Basil Cream
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 1/2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves, rinsed and patted dry
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (I prefer to use white in this recipe)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 small head leafy lettuce, leaves separated, rinsed and dried
In a large saucepan cover the chicken breasts with cold water and bring to a boil. Lower heat to a slow simmer and allow to cook for 12 to 15 minutes, depending upon how thick the breasts are. Drain and cool.
Cut the cooled chicken into bite size pieces and put them in a large bowl along with the onion, celery and grapes.
To make the dressing:
In the bowl of a food processor or blender process the garlic, basil and lemon juice until smooth. Add mayonnaise, salt, pepper and sugar; process again to blend. Pour over the chicken and other ingredients; toss and stir gently to coat all ingredients very well.
Arrange lettuce upon 4 serving plates and top each with the basil cream dressed chicken.