Has anyone noticed that it’s HOT outside? & As you can imagine, being about to “pop” doesn’t make the heat any more bearable. But, all this warm weather has given me an excuse to whip up our family’s favorite summer meal… chilled Chicken Salad, some warm biscuits or croissants, a big old bowl of fresh fruit & one of my favorite desserts ever – Chocolate Brownie Trifle. (By, the way, this meal makes a great “delivered” meal. So, if you have any friends who are “under the weather”, or say, just had a baby, & you want to give them the night off, this meal travels well & they don’t even have to heat it up!) Want to make your own perfect summer meal? Here are the recipes…

Grandma’s Chicken Salad
Chicken breasts, boiled and diced (I usually use 3-4, or you can cheat & use a rotisserie chicken)
Celery
Pecans (optional)
Grapes
1 Can crushed pineapple, drained
Mayonnaise
Salt and Pepper

Chop and dice chicken, celery, pecans, grape and pineapple, adding as much as you like of each. (I like lots!) Slowly add mayonnaise until you get the consistency you want. Then, salt and pepper to taste. Best if refrigerated prior to serving! (Just give it a good mix because the mayo tends to settle in the bottom after being in the fridge!) & That’s it! Pretty easy, huh?

For your “perfect summer meal” you’ll also want some croissants (if you want to make Chicken Salad sandwiches) or you can just have a basket of soft & fluffy rolls (my personal favorites are the Pillsbury Grands! Biscuits), a big ‘ole bowl of fresh fruit, & to top it all off…

Chocolate Brownie Trifle
1 Big pkg. fudge brownie mix (or you can cheat & buy the pre-made brownie bites)
2 Big pkg. instant chocolate pudding mix
8 Heath Bars, crushed or 2 bags of Skor chips
1+ container whipped topping (I love Cool Whip, so I tend to go heavy)
chocolate curls (optional)

Prepare brownie mix, bake per directions in 9×13 inch pan. Let cool and then crumble. Prepare pudding per the package directions, chilling for 5-10 minutes. Place a layer of crumbled brownies in bottom of 3-quart trifle dish (or any bowl), top with a layer of the pudding, then a layer of whipped topping & finally sprinkle with the crushed candy bars. Repeat layers, ending with the whipped topping & crushed candy bars. Garnish with chocolate curls. Chill 8 hours (or as long as you have… it gets better the longer you chill, but I usually can’t wait even an hour, & it still taste great!)

Hope you enjoy our perfect summer meal! I’d love to come to dinner next time you make it!

xoxo, K
chicken salad image via Whole Foods.