Rosemary Chicken Salad w/Tessemae's
Rosemary Chicken Salad w/Tessemae's
Tessemae's All Natural
I am a messy cook. I am not Martha or Giada, gliding gracefully around the kitchen, or Jamie Oliver with a charming British accent to cover up my clumsiness. I set down the butter only to forget where I put it thirty seconds later, and I can't carry a cup of liquid further than a few inches without spilling. There's a scar on my arm from the time I managed to burn myself while taking my beloved frozen pizza from the oven, and another on my left hand from when I pulled a toaster strudel from the toaster in high school and the liquid ran out, still taunting me almost a decade later.
But, I *can* cook. Really! I even like it!
It's just hard to find time. With school and work and everything else, it's hard to find the time. To plan out a meal, go grocery shopping, and to actually cook the meal, then clean it all up. Still, I love cooking. Maybe the point is that you're taking time out of your day to create something nourishing. If you're cooking by or for yourself, there's a meditative quality found in repetitive chopping or watching something boil on the stove. If cooking for or with others, there's always the bonding element as you create something together.
On a semi-side tangent, I will admit that as my foodie life has gotten bigger, I've been fortunate enough to be given food products to try and sample. At first I wasn't sure if this was something I wanted to do. I felt shy giving my true opinions on things when officially asked. But then I realized that this was part of the fun for me, to try new things and share them with other people who love to eat! So at first when Tessemae's offered to send me some of their sauces and marinades, I was a little undecided.
"What am I going to do with a bunch of sauce?" I wondered. "I can't just post a bunch of bottles of ketchup on my page."
But! Then I remembered that cooking was something I had intended to share on this blog when I started it, and that I had just been to LAZY to actually do it.
"A ha!" I exclaimed, in a moment of pure genius. "Sauces are for COOKING! This will force me to sit down and make something!"
So...long story short, here is a review + recipe post on Foodcellfie. I'll go with the mini review first: Tessemae's All Natural makes dressings and marinades which are...all natural. But also, gluten free, dairy free, sugar free, and vegan. Healthy stuff. They kindly sent me a box of their favorites to experiment with.
Here is the assortment they gave me:
Mayonnaise: This is the one I made my chicken salad with (recipe below). It's smooth, a tad runnier than you average mayonnaise but I have noticed that with all natural products. I actually liked the consistency because I found it worked better for my salad. (Which is all I use mayonnaise for anyways.)
Southwest Ranch: YUM! I put this on tacos after desperately realizing I had tacos but no hot sauce in the kitchen. It's really, really good with a good amount of flavor and spice.
BBQ Sauce: I brought a couple of these sauces over to a friend's BBQ to test these, so of course this was in the group. There were mixed reviews: the BBQ sauce is more sweet than spicy, which is not necessarily my thing, but other people really liked that. So I suppose this depends on your own preference for BBQ!
Caesar: I liked this dressing. It has a good Caesar taste and it went well with my salad of kale, almonds, and cranberries.
Lemon Garlic: I used up almost the entire bottle within a week! I put used this as a marinade for some baked ahi tuna on a whim. IT WAS DELICIOUS. I then proceeded to use this as marinade for salmon, chicken, and carrots, all baked in the oven in foil as well. It's SO good, lemon and garlic is a classic flavor pairing both of these can be overbearing if too strong. This is flavorful in a complimentary way.
Honey Balsamic: To be honest, this is the only one I haven't tried yet at the time of this post! I plan to use this to bake some chicken legs in the oven. I'll be sure and update once I do. :)
Ketchup: This was the least favorite of the group, mostly because it was very sweet. I also wonder if this is because as Americans we are so used to Heinz any other flavor of ketchup is a completely scary thing to us now.
Buffalo: DELICIOUS! The Buffalo sauce was clearly the winner of the BBQ. It's tangy, flavorful, and I swear you could dip almost anything savory food in this and it would come out tasting good. People were fighting over the last of it, it was so good!
I decided to make Rosemary Chicken Salad with the mayonnaise to try it out. I really like that this is all natural because I dearly love chicken/tuna/pasta salads but HATE Miracle Whip. It felt good to use something that was just as simple and fresh as everything else to bind the salad with, and it turned really good!
I am going to list the amounts of ingredients I used, but they are definitely NOT exact. Whenever I cook things, I tend to just throw things together that I think would taste good. I don't typically use recipe books. With the exception of a few mishaps, this method usually works out for me pretty well! The nice thing about cooking in your own kitchen is experimenting with the ingredients and flavors you like best. :)
Rosemary Chicken Salad
1 chicken breast, cooked
3 stalks celery
handful green onions
2 sprigs rosemary
handful walnuts (not pictured because I didn't have any on hand)
1.5 tablespoons Tessemae's All Natural mayonnaise
salt + pepper (I used celery salt and cracked peppercorn)
Directions: Chop up chicken, celery, apple, cucumber, and onions and put in bowl. Dice rosemary as small as you can, add to bowl. Break up walnuts and add to bowl. Then add in your mayonnaise, squeeze in a little lemon juice to taste, and a little bit of salt + pepper. Mix togther and garnish with lemon slices or rosemary sprigs.
Ta-da! It's easy! Let me know if you make it. Thank you for reading!!