I Come From the Land of Rivers and Pecans

Now that I’m an adult and live in the city, I can’t even believe that when I grew up, this was my backyard.

I guess I especially appreciate this slow and easy childhood now that I live with a Hurricane. (I’m not sure why; but that just changes everything, so I feel it must change this too.)

However, where I grew up is known for more than just its lazy rivers, its fantastic kayaking, its movie sets, ranches and city councilmen. It’s also known for its amazing pecan trees.
And these said gigantic pecan trees just so happen to grow the best pecans on the planet for the World’s Most Famous Pecan Chicken Salad.

The ancient recipe was initially stolen from Shasta, later adapted a bit for my pleasure, and currently coveted by many.

And here it is. For all you friends con queso. In honor of National Chicken Month (and Talk Like A Pirate Day), the recipe that rocks so much Casbah, it has its own zip code.

Martindale Pecan Chicken Salad
3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 cups water
2 or 3 chicken bouillon cubes
1 pound seedless purple grapes, or more
2 cups pecan halves
1 cup diced celery
1 cup chopped fresh dill*
1.5 cups sour cream
1.5 cups mayonnaise
Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

*It is essential that you use fresh dill.
No substitutions, exchanges or excuses.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Arrange the chicken breasts in a single layer in a shallow pan. In a separate pot on the stove, bring the water to a boil and add the bouillon. Stir to dissolve. Pour enough bouillon broth in the baking pan just to cover the chicken breasts. Cover with cooking parchment or aluminum foil and bake until cooked through, 30 minutes. Allow the chicken to cool in the liquid, then discard the liquid. Shred the chicken into bite-size pieces and place them in a large bowl. Add the grapes, pecans, celery and chopped dill and toss well. In a separate bowl, mix the sour cream and mayo together. Toss this into the chicken salad. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
(It’s even better if you refrigerate it overnight.)


The Details

0 Responses to I Come From the Land of Rivers and Pecans

  1. s@bd says:

    I'm from way up north where the pecans cost about $400 per nut. Do you think I should spend my kid's education fund to make this salad? I mean, does it really rock that much Casbah?

  2. Bek says:

    This is my kind of salad. I also pay 400$ per nut –but thank goodness for Trader Joe's which allows us to indulge occasionally! Love the pictures. Looks like a great place to grow up.

  3. mothergoosemouse says:

    Chicken salad is something else I've recently grown to appreciate. I think I'll have to give this one a whirl.

  4. shaz says:

    i looove where you grew up. beautiful!

  5. nancy says:

    Great pictures!Happy Love Thursday Eve!

  6. laurie says:

    oh man, i love good chicken salad. i am not generally a fan of grapes (or anything sweet) in my chicken salad, but if Chicken Salad con Queso has grapes, then i'll try it with grapes, dangit.bee-yootiful pictures. how did you ever leave? we just moved from one N.C. town to another and one of the last nights-out i had before leaving was a moonlight tubing trip down the river in my old town. no river in my new town. there are lakes, but that just isn't the same.happy love thursday!

  7. Mommy off the Record says:

    I'm curious as to where you grew up. It looks beautiful.

  8. Kristen says:

    Wow, what an awesome place to experience childhood. And now I'm hungry for pecans…mmmmm.

  9. DeAnna says:

    Wow – what a fun backyard! And beautiful pictures. It makes me wish for my kids to have that same "slow and easy" childhood. And since Pecans are reasonably priced where I live- I am definitely going to be trying this recipe!

  10. Jenny says:

    Gorgeous pictures! I remember having (literally) gracery sacks stuffed with pecans. And more pecans in the freezer…and the fridge…and in the closet…PS. you got my email, right?

  11. Jen says:

    beautiful and yum! Definately going to try this salad next time I can grab a bag of pecans at the costco…

  12. Ordinary Janet says:

    I'm drooling into my coffee cup. I'll try this recipe!

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