On Monday morning, I had a work call at 9:30 (that's right, I'm very dedicated). After that, though, it was staycation all the way.
Since my mom was staying with me, and had meetings of her own all morning (over the phone, natch), I decided to vacate the premises as best I could. I took the opportunity to hit the market for some chicken, cucumbers and bacon (the better to fuel up for my staycation, of course).
On Tuesday morning, I seasoned said chicken with salt, pepper, and thyme (from my windowsill - it's so nice to have access to fresh herbs at a moment's notice again) and roasted it. It's well-documented on this blog how much I like to have cold chicken lying around at all times. In this case, though, I will admit I had a plan in mind for at least some of the meat.
While the chicken cooled, I set out some vinegar, oil, mustard and an egg yolk on the counter. Once they'd reached room temperature, I whisked the yolk, mustard and vinegar together, adding a pinch of salt and a grind or two of pepper. As I whisked, I drizzled in the oil - drop by drop at first, then in a thin stream, until the egg yolk had taken on all the oil and had become...mayonnaise.
Honestly, if there's a pleasure more basic or delicious than homemade mayonnaise folded with warm chicken, cucumber, chopped shallots, and finished with some chervil and chives, I don't know it. I truly don't.
Queenie's Chicken Salad
Breast of one roasted chicken, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
1 Kirby cucumber, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1 tbs. chervil, finely chopped
1 tbs. chives, finely chopped
1 to 2 tbs. homemade mayonnaise
Salt and pepper, to taste
Combine the chicken, shallot, cucumber, chervil and half the chives in a medium bowl. Add the mayonnaise a bit at a time, folding the ingredients into the sauce, until your salad has the desired consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper, sprinkle with the remaining chives, and eat as soon as humanly possible.
Serves one, generously.
If you can't find chervil, substitute a teaspoon of flat-leaf parsley. If you don't want to make homemade mayo, substitute two tablespoons of commercial mayonnaise mixed with one teaspoon of sherry vinegar.