TGIFriday's Pecan-Crusted Chicken Salad

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“Don't let the lengthy directions fool you; this salad is not difficult to prepare. Pecan-crusted chicken, served sliced and chilled on salad greens, tossed with Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing, topped with mandarin oranges, sweet-glazed pecans, celery, dried cranberries, and Bleu cheese. Time does not include chill time. I borrowed a friend's cookbook entitled Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 and wanted to put this recipe here so that I wouldn't lose it.”

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Make the pecan-crusted chicken first since it is served cold.
  2. Pound each chicken fillet to about 1/2-inch thick. You can do this easily by covering each chicken breast in plastic wrap, and pounding with a kitchen mallet.
  3. Combine 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans, corn flake crumbs, and 3/4 teaspoon salt in a shallow bowl.
  4. Combine milk with beaten eggs in another shallow bowl.
  5. Dump the flour into another shallow bowl.
  6. Bread each chicken breast by coating each with flour.
  7. Dip the flour-dusted chicken into the egg mixture.
  8. Coat the chicken with a thick coating of the pecans and corn flake crumbs.
  9. Preheat 1/2 cup canola oil in a large skillet over medium/low heat.
  10. When the oil is hot, saute the chicken fillets for 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown.
  11. Cool chicken on a rack or paper-towels.
  12. When you can handle the chicken, cover it and refrigerate it for at least two hours.
  13. As the chicken chills, you can make the balsamic vinaigrette by combining 1 cup canola oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, granulated sugar and 1/2 tsp salt in a blender.
  14. Blend on low speed for just a few seconds, or until the dressing begins to thicken. Don't blend too long or your vinaigrette will get too thick, like mayonnaise.
  15. Pour vinaigrette into a small bowl and mix in minced garlic.
  16. Chill this until you're ready to use it.
  17. When you're ready to build your salad, toss lettuce and celery with about 3/4 cup of the balsamic vinaigrette.
  18. Arrange the lettuce on four plates, then sprinkle the cranberries over the lettuce (about 1/4 cup per serving).
  19. Combine the 3 tablespoons of brown sugar with 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans.
  20. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the mixture on each salad.
  21. Sprinkle about 1/2 can of drained mandarin orange segments over each salad, followed by about 2 tablespoons of crumbled bleu cheese.
  22. Slice each chicken fillet into thin strips. Arrange one sliced chicken fillet on top of each salad and serve.

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