RECIPE: Make the Ginger Room’s Coronation Chicken Salad

The Ginger Room's Coronation Chicken Salad. (Chris Hunt for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
caption arrowCaption
The Ginger Room's Coronation Chicken Salad. (Chris Hunt for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Credit: Chris Hunt

Credit: Chris Hunt

A dear friend treated me to high tea for my birthday at the Ginger Room in Alpharetta. It was splendid. We were treated like royalty and the entire experience was incredible. I was even adorned with a crown. Which brings me to the Ginger Room’s signature tea sandwich, Coronation Chicken Salad. It was a standout among all the yummy treats. Do you think they would ever disclose their secret recipe? — Sherry Paulsen, Atlanta

The origin story of coronation chicken credits the chefs of Le Cordon Bleu cookery school in London for creating this recipe as part of the banquet for Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation in 1953. The combination of chicken, curry, spices and something sweet such as raisins, dried apricots or grapes has been tweaked over the years to suit different palates. This recipe is the version adapted by the Ginger Room co-owner Angela Avery.

Avery’s coronation chicken is the filling for one of several tea sandwiches which include smoked salmon, classic cucumber and smoked Gouda pimento.

The Ginger Room’s Coronation Chicken Salad
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons lemon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
  • 1 (5-pound) roasting chicken
  • 1 pound red grapes, quartered and seeds removed if not using seedless grapes
  • 1 to 4 tablespoons curry powder, to taste
  • 2 cups mayonnaise
  • Sliced potato bread, if using for sandwich filling
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place a rack in a small roasting pan.
  • In a small bowl, combine butter, lemon pepper and seasoning salt. Stir until thoroughly mixed.
  • Loosen the skin of the chicken and rub the seasoned butter over the breast and thigh meat. Place seasoned chicken on rack and bake 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the meat reaches 160 degrees.
  • Remove from oven and allow to cool. Remove meat from carcass and discard skin and bones. Cut the meat into 1/4-inch dice and place in large bowl. Add grapes and curry power. Start with 1 tablespoon curry powder and increase until you have the intensity of curry you prefer. Toss to evenly distribute curry and taste for seasoning. Stir in mayonnaise until well mixed. Taste again, adding more curry powder if needed. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Avery recommends using potato bread if serving as a sandwich. Makes 7 cups.

Nutritional information

Per serving: Per 1/4-cup serving: 190 calories (percent of calories from fat, 70), 9 grams protein, 5 grams carbohydrates, trace fiber, 15 grams total fat (4 grams saturated), 41 milligrams cholesterol, 196 milligrams sodium.

From the menu of ... The Ginger Room, 61 Roswell St., Alpharetta. 678-399-9964,

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