To ensure that the chicken cooks through, start with cold water in step 1 and don’t use breasts that weigh more than 8 ounces or are thicker than 1 inch. This salad can be served in a sandwich or spooned over leafy greens.
Curried Chicken Salad with California Figs and Cashews
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, no more than 1 inch thick, trimmed, (6- to 8-ounce)
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 2 celery ribs minced
- 1 shallot minced
- 1 cup Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Figs stemmed and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
- 1/2 cup raw cashews toasted and chopped coarse
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
- Dissolve 2 tablespoons salt in 6 cups cold water in Dutch oven. Submerge chicken in water. Heat pot over medium heat until water registers 170 degrees. Turn off heat, cover pot, and let stand until chicken registers 165 degrees, 15 to 17 minutes.
- Transfer chicken to paper towel–lined tray. Refrigerate until chicken is cool, about 30 minutes. While chicken cools, microwave vegetable oil, curry powder, and cayenne, uncovered, until oil is hot, about 30 seconds. Whisk mayonnaise, lime juice, ginger, and curry mixture together in large bowl.
- Pat chicken dry with paper towels and cut into ½-inch pieces. Transfer chicken to bowl with mayonnaise mixture. Add celery, shallot, figs, cashews, and cilantro; toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve. (Salad can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.)