Platings: Chicken Salad Sandwich with Walnuts, Roasted Tomatoes, Pickled Red Onions and Frisée

Menu Part: 
Sandwich/Wrap
Cuisine Type: 
American
Serves: 
4 sandwiches

Director of Food and Beverage Mike Barbera oversees the menu at ’wichcraft, a soup, salad and sandwich restaurant with 16 locations in New York City. He gives his sandwiches a fine-dining spin with farm-to-table, seasonal ingredients, housemade condiments and artisan breads. For this popular chicken salad sandwich, a whole chicken is roasted, red onions are pickled in-house, aioli is made from scratch and tomatoes are roasted—all before the chicken salad is made. But make no mistake—wichcraft is a high-volume fast-casual concept, serving about 6,000 customers a day.

Ingredients

Roasted Chicken
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
1 3-lb. free-range chicken

Pickled Red Onions
¼ cup red wine vinegar
½ cup water
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. black peppercorns
1 tsp. fennel seeds
1 tsp. coriander seeds
2 small red onions, sliced

Roasted Tomatoes
½ head garlic, divided into unpeeled cloves
8 sprigs of thyme
10 whole peeled tomatoes
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Aioli
1 large egg yolk
½ tsp. Dijon mustard
½ tsp. chopped garlic
Pinch cayenne pepper
1 tbsp. white wine vinegar
1 cup canola oil
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp. kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Chicken salad
½ cup diced celery
¼ cup chopped walnuts
¼ cup pickled mustard seeds
½ cup Aoili
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 cups frisée leaves
½ tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
½ tsp. red wine vinegar
½ cup Roasted Tomatoes, chopped
8 slices multigrain bread
¼ cup Pickled Red Onions 

Steps

  1. For Roasted Chicken: Salt and pepper the chicken
    inside and out. Roast on a rack at 375°F for 1 hr. 20 min.
  2. For Pickled Onions: In a large saucepan, combine vinegar, water, sugar, and spices; bring to a boil. Pour liquid over sliced onions and cover with plastic wrap.
  3. Set aside to cool, stirring occasionally. Keeps well if refrigerated for up to 2 to 3 weeks.
  4. For Roasted Tomatoes: Smash garlic cloves; combine with thyme on baking sheet. Lay tomatoes over top and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
  5. Cook tomatoes at 275°F until very tender and concentrated. Cool and chop; re-season if necessary.
  6. For Aioli: Place egg yolk, mustard, garlic, cayenne and vinegar in food processor or blender. Start the blending slowly, adding the canola oil in a thin, even stream. When half of the oil has been added, add 1 tbsp water.
  7. Slowly add remaining canola oil and blend until fully incorporated. If mixture looks a bit thick, add another 1 tsp. water.  Slowly add olive oil and blend until you have a smooth mayonnaise. Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Use immediately or refrigerate 2 to 3 days.
  8. For Chicken Salad: Pick chicken meat from bones and dice. In large bowl, combine chicken, celery, walnuts, mustard seeds, aioli and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper to taste.
  9. In a separate bowl, toss frisée in oil and vinegar; season with salt and pepper. Distribute chopped roasted tomatoes on 4 slices of bread. Top with the chicken salad, onions and frisée. Top with remaining bread slices; cut sandwiches in half and serve. 

More From FoodService Director

Menu Development
muse school produce

Kayla Webb, executive chef at Muse School, has transitioned the private K-12 day school in Calabasas, Calif., to an entirely vegan menu over a three-year period. Webb talks about her menuing, and how the school’s kitchen earned the title of “greenest restaurant in the world” from the Green Restaurant Association.

Q: How did you help parents get used to the idea of an all plant-based diet?

A: The first year, we didn’t announce it. We were just serving one plant-based meal a week, so it wasn’t that drastic. We do monthly Muse Talks where we invite different speakers to our school to...

Ideas and Innovation
lettuce dirt

Savor at McCormick Place developed the Green Thumb brand for menu items and products featuring its rooftop bounty; the latest is a pale ale made with the first crop of hops grown on the roof. Promoting that branding and the convention center’s green certification has brought in business from groups with a sustainability focus.

Ideas and Innovation
business pamphlet fair show

As we struggle to recruit and retain millennials, we had our current millennial employees invite friends who don’t work for our organization to a Q&A session where we find out why our organization is or isn’t appealing to them, and what they are looking for in an employer. I recommend doing this off-site in a casual environment so you can get honest and open feedback that could be useful for better marketing.

Menu Development
pho bowl

Achieving authenticity can be tricky. Late last year, Oberlin College landed in the news when students protested the way dining services at the Ohio school was botching ethnic food, serving up inauthentic versions of Asian and Middle Eastern dishes. It’s a challenge other operators are confronting, too, often tapping staff and patrons for inspiration.

At 260-bed Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Scottish Rite, Executive Chef Bradley Czajka, himself of Polish-Ukrainian descent, started Global Stations as a way to recognize the diversity of cultures at the hospital. “We have such an...

FSD Resources