A Personal Jeanne in the Kitchen

I was not able to cook much while we were out in California.  We were there for a funeral, but we were also able to visit with quite a few friends while we were out there.  I was able to play in my friend’s kitchen for a bit.  My dear friend Leslie, whom I have known since I was in the 7th grade,  had said she wanted her own personal “Jeanne in the Kitchen”, so I granted her that wish.  I raided her kitchen and used what she had to create a delicious curried chicken salad that we took with us for a fun picnic at the beach.   Our curried chicken salad was served on a fabulous baguette, with fresh snap peas and a light and crisp Sauvignon Blanc that complimented the green apples and grapes in the salad very well.  Things don’t have to be fancy to be delicious.  The most important ingredient in any recipe is love.  Anytime I am either cooking for or with friends, the love is always there, and magical moments just happen.  Don’t be afraid to use your imagination and be creative, and you’ll be amazed at the results.   Who cares if you have exactly what you need.  Change things up a bit and add what you have.  Just let the good times flow and let the magic happen.


Leslie’s Curried Chicken Salad

We did not purchase anything.  We simply used ingredients that Leslie had in her kitchen.  I mixed and matched until we came up with a delicious combination for the salad.  She did not have enough mayonnaise, so we mixed what she had with Greek yogurt, which gave the salad a nice little tangy, zippy flavor.  Our creation passed her family’s taste test, and it was enjoyed by all.


cooked chicken

2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored and diced

yogurt or mayonnaise

grapes, cut in half

chopped walnuts


fresh ground black pepper

curry powder

fresh basil, chiffonade


Cutting the apples and chopping the basil.



Adding the grapes and walnuts.




Scooter was my personal assistant for the day.  He was my special Sous Chef, just hoping we would drop something he could try.






Author: ajeanneinthekitchen

I have worked in the restaurant and catering industry for 35 years. I attended 2 culinary schools in Southern California, and have a degree in culinary arts from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, as well as a few other degrees in other areas. I love to cook and I love to feed people.

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