Thursday, June 27, 2013

Chicken Cantaloupe Salad

Chicken Cantaloupe Salad

These origami paper napkins were a splurge but so well worth it.  Plus a real conversation piece at the table.



The napkins come prefolded in an origami shape. You will impress your guests who think you spent a lot of time  folding each napkin :)







Chicken Cantaloupe-serves 4
Ingredients:
  • 1 package chicken flavor rice mix (Rice-A-Roni) do not substitute or try to find another product similar to this one-follow the cooking directions on box
  •  4 cantaloupes –each cut in half
  •  4 cups cut up chicken (could buy a roasted chicken from deli)
  •  1 cup sliced almonds
  •  ½ tsp. curry powder
  • ¾ cup dried cherries
  • Miracle Whip (do not substitute)

Directions:
  • Cook  the Rice-A Roni according to directions
  • Place rice mixture in a colander to drain

  • Cut each cantaloupe in half-place one half face down on cutting board-with a sharp paring knife cut a saw tooth edge going all around the cantaloupe-set aside the triangle shaped pieces-repeat this three times with other cantaloupe halves.
  • In a large bowl add chicken, curry, cherries if using them and cooked rice Note: you will only use 2-1/2  cups cooked rice so save rest of rice for another meal, Use a slotted spoon to drain the rice into chicken mixture
  • Add only enough Miracle Whip to moisten all ingredients (I started with a little under 1/3 cup)
  •  Cover and refrigerate till chilled
  •  Wrap 4 saw toothed cantaloupe pieces with plastic wrap till serving and refrigerate
  •  To serve divide chicken mixture among cantaloupe piece and sprinkle with almonds

Cook’s Note: My original recipe called for 1 TB. curry powder-curry is a strong spice so I would suggest starting with ½  tsp. and taste till you get the flavor strength you want.  You do not want the curry to overpower rest of ingredients but it is essential to the recipe. A few fresh raspberries could be used for garnish on top of the chicken mixture.
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Book Review "the House Girl"by Tara Conklin
This book is categorized as historical fiction. And after reading it you certainly will have gained a better understanding of the class structure, inequalities and norm of cruelty during the 1800's for blacks. The book provides a lot of information on slavery and the Underground Railroad system. 
There are two parallel stories in this novel about one woman living in 2004 and another  woman  in 1852 and how their stories become intertwined by art. 
Lina Sparrow, the daughter of two artists, is a new law associate in a prestigious firm in New York. She is on the path to partnership when a wealthy and powerful client offers the law firm the chance to handle a class-action suit on behalf of the descendants of American slaves. Josephine Bell is a 17 year old black house girl on a Virginia Farm.  She is a companion to a white mistress Lu Anne. Josephine has a lot of privileges for a young black girl. She becomes a gifted artist who has been taught to read and write but really wants to be free.  Before she dies Lu Anne has  secret to share with Josephine that causes Josephine to make a hard choice.  
The two stories  merge when Lina' father suggests the possibility that acclaimed art work of Lu Anne Bell was really done by a slave. 
Each of the women in the story share important characteristics-big dreams, fierce determination and coming to terms with their lives. You will find it an engaging summer read.

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