The weather was hot, so Becca decreed that we would cool off with some salads. Mags brought curried chicken salad, and Louis decided to make pot de crème as a chilled dessert to top off the evening.
WHOLE FOODS’ CURRIED CHICKEN SALAD (recipe via the Hartford Courant)
3 pounds cooked chicken, shredded or diced
1/4 cup diced red onion
3 ribs celery, diced
1/2 to 1 cup currants (optional)
1/2 to 1 cup chopped peanuts or almonds (optional)
1-1/2 cups mayonnaise
2-1/2 to 3 tablespoons curry powder, or to taste
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
In a large mixing bowl, combine cooked chicken, red onion, celery, and most of the currants and nuts, reserving some for garnish.
In a smaller bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, curry powder, turmeric and salt and pepper, combining until smooth.
Pour the mayonnaise mixture atop the chicken mixture and blend, working gently until chicken is fully coated. Refrigerate until use.
Spoon curried chicken onto greens or atop toasted rolls. Garnish with reserved currants and peanuts or almonds. Feeds 6 to 8.
POTS DE CRÈME (recipe via Chowhound.com)
2 cups heavy cream
5 ounces good-quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
1/2 cup granulated sugar
4 large egg yolks, at room temperature
Heat the oven to 300°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Bring about 4 cups water to a simmer over medium heat. Arrange 6 (6-ounce) ramekins 1/2 inch apart in a large baking dish; set aside.
Place cream in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring it just to a simmer. Remove from heat, add chocolate, and stir until completely melted, about 3 minutes; set aside.
Whisk sugar and yolks in a large bowl until thickened and pale in color, about 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in 1/3 of the chocolate mixture, then add the remainder while constantly stirring (try not to incorporate any air).
Place a fine mesh strainer over a large measuring cup or a bowl with a spout and pour in the custard base. Remove the strainer and evenly divide the custard base among the ramekins. Tap each ramekin a few times to break any bubbles that appear on the surface.
Place the baking dish in the oven and carefully add enough of the simmering water to reach 1 inch up the sides of the ramekins. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and poke several holes in the foil to allow steam to escape. Bake 25 minutes or until the outer 1 inch of each custard is set (the centers will still be slightly jiggly).
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