Chicken and egg salad toasts with lemon aioli and fennel

Chicken and egg salad toasts from the smitten kitchen cookbook

From “Sandwiches, Tarts, and Pizzas” in the smitten kitchen cookbook project – I made this chicken and egg salad with lemon aioli and fennel this past Sunday to bring to a friend’s house to enjoy while watching the Golden Globes. This was my first time making aioli! And lo and behold, it was a success, and my arm didn’t fall off from all the whisking.

What worked: This was really tasty and fairly easy! I tend to stay away from recipes that call for either having leftover cooked chicken or for having to prepare chicken separately ahead of time – mostly because I a) don’t often keep very much meat in the house, let alone enough to have some left over, and b) cooking the meat separately seems a little tedious to me (I’m not sure why). But I didn’t really mind in this instance, especially since the recipe includes instructions for both options, and it took only a brief amount of time to cook the chicken and let cool before mixing with the other ingredients. Otherwise, the most cumbersome step of this recipe was the aioli – but I asked my husband to help slowly pour in the olive oil while I patiently whisked away, which was very helpful. If you can get through that step, the rest is easy-peasy.

What didn’t work: I’ve read the recipe front and back several times, and I cannot for the life of me find the step where I’m supposed to add the hard-boiled eggs after they’d cooked and cooled. The recipe tells you how to cook them, but then never actually says to chop them up and mix them in with the rest of the ingredients. I figured that part out, obviously – it’s not exactly a difficult step, which is probably why it was overlooked in the first place.

Would I make it again?: I think so, yes – especially as a dish to bring to a potluck or something along those lines, since the dish can be assembled ahead of time and travels well.

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