Turn boring brown bag lunches into gourmet meals with Bruegger's

12:37 PM, Apr 28, 2009   |    comments
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More and more people are making their own lunches these days, and this morning Bruegger's Executive Chef Philip Smith showed us how to turn boring brown bag basics like sandwiches into gourmet treats. For more information about Bruegger's new sandwiches or to find a location nearest you, check out www.brueggers.com. Bruegger's Tarragon Chicken Salad
Makes 6 portions
1 1/4 lb white breast meat, picked and 1/4" diced or use all white meat from a 5 lb roaster (the chicken can be poached, roasted or grilled)
1/2 cup slivered or nib almonds
3/4 cup Craisins or dried cranberries
1 Tablespoon red onion finely diced (optional)
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Pinch of salt
Pinch of pepper
1/2 tablespoon dried tarragon
In a large mixing bowl, combine half mayonnaise, lemon juice, salt, pepper and tarragon. This will have a thick Caesar dressing like consistency.
Add in the chicken, cranberries (and onions if included). Combine these with the dressing in with a spatula to coat.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed. Add as much of the remaining mayonnaise as suits your taste.
Chill in the refrigerator for a couple of hours to plump the cranberries and allow the flavors to meld.
Just before serving, toast the almonds on a cookie pan under a low broiler setting (watch these as they burn in seconds) and then fold them into the salad.(keep a few for garnish) You can keep this covered and refrigerated for up to 5 days.
Serve open faced on sandwiches or simply presented on Boston or butter lettuce leaves. Garnish with few of the toasted almonds.
TIPS:
1. Pressed for time.... buy toasted almonds.
2. Change our mayonnaise for light mayonnaise to reduce calories.
3. Using freshly ground or cracked black pepper and fresh tarragon leaves for a gourmet treat.

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