Once upon a time I was sitting in a tea room wishing it was mine.
Several years ago I thought I wanted a tea room. Who doesn’t like going to tea with all those cute little tea cups, lace table cloths, cucumber finger sandwiches, cheese straws, and a pot of steeping tea sitting right there on the table snug under it’s little tea cozy.
Several years ago, a friend of mine and I had talked about opening a tea room. After all, with all the catering experience I have, it would have been a perfect fit. We tried just about every tea room in our area, all the time envisioning what our tea room would look like. We attended a 3 day tea conference at Magnolia and Ivy in Georgia on “How to Open A Tea Room”. Magnolia and Ivy is listed as one of the great tea rooms in America and doesn’t that name just elicit the idea of an afternoon tea with ladies with big hats sipping their tea and talking about what’s going on in their lives.
Well, we collected china, tea pots, teas, and anything we would need to serve tea all the time looking for a perfect place to house our dream. We really wanted an old place with Southern Charm and that was not to be found in our area. So, eventually we gave up on that dream but I continue to cater teas and luncheons so I still get my “fix” on doing tea type foods.
One tea room we use to go to served this smoked turkey salad sandwich. I’m sure she used smoked “deli” turkey and I was sure, as always, that I could do that sandwich and do it better. My husband, who is a genius at the smoker smokes my chicken for me using either hickory or apple wood. If you only have a gas grill, take a few chunks of wood and put on the opposite end of the grill and it will smoke up and you will have the best smoked flavor on your chicken.
This is really a fool proof recipe but you do need to smoke your chicken. It makes all the difference in the world. I don’t really have a detailed recipe. All you need is smoked chicken, boiled eggs, spinach, a little Dijon mustard, mayonnaise and some salt and pepper. Great served on these little mini croissants.
I use baby spinach in this recipe because it is so tender and I like to use some of the small leaves in place of lettuce on the sandwich.
Get everything chopped up and then start adding your mayonnaise and Dijon mustard to taste.
Smoked Chicken Salad Sandwich
6-8 chicken breast (boneless or bone-in)
1/2-1 bag fresh baby spinach, chopped (reserve a few leaves for sandwiches
mayonnaise, enough to hold it together
3-4 hard boiled eggs, chopped
1-2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
salt and pepper
Smoke your chicken breast on grill using apple or hickory wood to add smoke flavor. Cook until it is no longer pink on the inside. Cool and then chop by hand or in the food processor.
Chop the spinach coarsely and mix with the cooled chopped chicken. Add 1-2 Tablespoons of the Dijon mustard and as much mayonnaise as you like to get the consistency you like. Salt and pepper to taste.
Serve on split croissants or a homemade bread or bread of your choice.