Chinese Chicken Salad
yields: 4 generous servings
E: Kudos to me for running on the treadmill today and eating this healthy salad for dinner. I’m trying to be healthier about by physical activity and my eating. Today I even woke up early to make myself a green juice smoothie, and do a 15-minute workout from Women’s Health Magazine. My sister Maggie and I are constantly sending each other our meals throughout the day, and pictures of ourselves at the gym to motivate each other. The same goes for my sister Sandra. Today, naturally, I sent them a picture of this salad. Ha ha. What do you do to ensure you reach your health goals? Perhaps make this salad for dinner tonight? You can’t go wrong.
This salad recipe is my version of Paltrow and Thursten’s Chinese Chicken Salad. The problem I find with cooking many of her recipes is that she uses ingredients that are very difficult for me to obtain. I don’t have a Trader Joes or Wholefoods. The other problems is that her ingredients are sometimes pricey. So here is my version, with shortcuts, and substitutions.
⅓ cup sesame oil, untoasted
4 tablespoons rice-wine vinegar
1 large lemon
¼ cup water
1 garlic clove
½ cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup red shell japanese miso dressing (Costco)
½ teaspoon fresh grated ginger
¼ teaspoon chinese five spice
kosher salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
Whisk together all the dressing ingredients in a bowl, transfer to a jar and store in refrigerator until ready to use.
6 scallions, cut in quarters, then thinly sliced
1 teaspoon ginger, finely grated
1 romaine lettuce, finely sliced
1 green endive lettuce, finely sliced
¼ red lettuce, core discarded, finely sliced
2 cups carrots ( i bought organic pre-cut, shredded carrots)
10 snow peas, finely cut lengthwise
6 tablespoons cilantro, medium chopped
chicken, shredded,* about ½ chicken breast per person
* Save time by cooking your chicken in a crock-pot overnight. I cook batches of shredded chicken. 4 breasts and one can of organic chicken broth on high for 4 hours. Afterwards four hours it switches to warm mode. I set it at night before I go to bed at 10:00 pm and when I wake up at 7:00 I take the chicken out and put it in the refrigerator for later use. Season with salt. I don’t add ginger, or any other spice in case I want to use it for other types of salads, or even enchiladas. You don’t want ginger chicken enchiladas- not cute.
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
Place the scallions and ginger in a bowl with a little bit of water for steaming. Place in the microwave for 30 seconds. Let it cool in the freezer for 5 minutes. Then drain the water and ginger out.
Combine the remaining ingredients in the salad bowl. Add the scallions. Shred the chicken and season it with the dressing and some salt. Then add it to the salad. Top it with sesame seeds and a decorative cilantro leaf. Enjoy!
Reminder: Wash your produce. I have a salad spinner I use to thoroughly wash the lettuce, and air dry it. You don’t want any water on your leafs, because that not only makes your salad soggy, but also the dressing won’t stick.
Tip: If you don’t know the best way to julienne/finely slice the lettuce just look up how-to videos. The easiest way is to place the leaves (free of water- pat dry if you have to) on top of each other, then wrap them like a burrito or taquito lengthwise. Then once it’s tightly wrapped, you use a sharp knife to thinly slice the lettuce width wise. For the red lettuce, you can simply cut it in half and start thinly slicing the half with the flat part on the surface.