Persian Chicken Salad

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Traditionally, Persian salads are decked with a variety of fresh herbs, such as mint, basil, and parsley. You may want to add some sprigs to garnish this version; the leaves can be eaten right along with the salad. Hot pita is an ideal accompaniment. Slideshows:  More Middle Eastern Recipes 

Persian Chicken Salad
Photo: © James Baigrie
Yield:
4

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds small new potatoes (about 6), cut into quarters

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 1/3 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 4)

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper

  • 1 cup plain yogurt

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1/4 cup lime juice (from about 2 limes)

  • 4 carrots, grated

  • 2 cucumbers, peeled, halved, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch dice

  • 2 ribs celery, cut into 1/4-inch dice

  • 1 cup frozen petite peas, thawed

  • 1 red onion, chopped fine

  • 1/2 cup Kalamata or other black olives, halved and pitted

  • 1/3 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil or parsley

Directions

  1. Put the potatoes in a medium saucepan of salted water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer until just tender, about 12 minutes. Drain the potatoes and let cool.

  2. In a large nonstick frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over moderate heat. Season the chicken with 1/4 teaspoon each of the salt and pepper. Cook the breasts until browned and just done, about 5 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the pan and let it cool. Cut into 1/2-inch chunks.

  3. In a large glass or stainless-steel bowl, whisk together the yogurt, mayonnaise, mustard, lime juice, and the remaining 1 1/4 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add the potatoes, chicken, carrots, cucumbers, celery, peas, onion, olives, parsley, and basil and toss.

Suggested Pairing

Pouilly-Fumé is a can't-miss partner for fresh herbs and vegetables. Made from Sauvignon Blanc in France's Loire Valley, Pouilly-Fumé has penetrating herbal flavors of its own.

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