Thursday, June 26, 2008

Chinese Chicken Salad

You know, sometimes I just don’t have a story to go along with a recipe. I made this Chinese Chicken Salad last week and haven’t posted about it until now because I couldn’t think of what I should write. But you know what? I think this one mostly speaks for itself. It’s easy. It’s healthy. It’s colorful. It’s delicious. Nuff said.

I’m including the original recipe below, but this dish is easily adaptable. Use whatever nuts you like. I used walnuts, but I think cashews also would have been good. I used regular old green cabbage in place of napa because, for some reason, the former is half the price of the latter. I also served mine in (washed) cabbage leaves, just because it seemed like a good use for those outer leaves that I usually don't use. All the ingredients work wonderfully together, and the chicken, which is flavored very simply with a few brushes of soy sauce and sesame oil, is moist and tasty. The whole dish is fabulous, especially for summer.

OK, that’s it. Enjoy!

Chinese Chicken Salad
From Ellie Krieger

4 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce, divided
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, divided
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1/2 head napa cabbage, thinly shredded (about 6 cups)
1/4 head red cabbage, shredded (about 2 cups)
1 large carrot, shredded (about 2 cups)
3 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced, greens included, about 1/2 cup
1 (8-ounce) can sliced water chestnuts

1 (11-ounce) can Mandarin oranges in water or juice (not syrup), drained
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce or chili sauce
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil and brush onto chicken breasts.

Arrange in a baking dish and bake until juices run clear, about 15 to 20 minutes, or until thermometer inserted in thickest part of the meat reads 160 degrees F. Remove from oven, allow to cool completely, and then cut into bite-size chunks.

In a large bowl, combine napa cabbage, red cabbage, carrot, scallions, water chestnuts, Mandarin oranges, and sliced chicken. In a separate bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, oil, 1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil, brown sugar, and chili sauce.* Pour dressing over salad and toss to combine. Divide among bowls and top each serving with 2 teaspoons toasted almonds.

*The dressing is good, but Adam and I both wished there was more. Consider doubling it.


noble pig said...

So good, I think I've made this before too becuase I adore Ellie Krieger. Nice photos.

Kevin said...

That salad looks really good!

Grace said...

good ol' ellie. good ol' red cabbage. good ol' walnuts and brown sugar and soy sauce.
no story necessary--the recipe alone is enough! :)

Parker said...

Great salad... love the way it is presented in the lettuce/cabbage leaf - really nice.

Deborah said...

This does speak for itself!! I actually have been going through a bit of writer's block - it's sometimes hard to come up with something interesting to say on every blog post!! But really, I wonder how many people actually read what I write, or if they just look at the pictures!!

Annie & Nate said...

Not bad, but I'll forego the water chestnuts.

I'm with you - I really have to fight the writers block and find something interesting to say.

Jeena said...

That is one tasty salad! I love the presentation.

Leah said...

Ooooh, I'm all over that one. ;-)

I'm hosting a girl's weekend in two weeks and your salad is gonna be lunch one of the days. Yummy!! Thanks for the recipe! I'll let yah know how mine turns out.

giz said...

This salad would for sure float my boat.

Lore said...

I think I could have this chicken salad for days in a row and still not be bored! Looks amazing.

Canada said...

Lovely salad. I just bought canned mandarin oranges and chicken to make this salad. I think this recipe is the best of all.