Thursday, March 17, 2011
CEIMB: Savory Chinese Chicken Salad
This week's Craving Ellie in My Belly recipe was Savory Chinese Chicken Salad, hosted by Danica of Danica's Daily. I found that this salad could not have come at a better time. I've been eating out way too much this past week, so a nice, refreshing homemade salad such as this was just what I needed. On the evening I prepared it, putting everything together was a snap, and I think that had something to do with the fact that we had roasted a whole chicken two days prior and I had set some aside specifically for this recipe. It definitely helped to already have the chicken cooked.
The rest of the ingredients for this salad are easy to assemble, too. It's cabbage (I used a whole head of Napa cabbage and skipped the two cabbages in the original recipe), carrots, scallions, a can of sliced water chestnuts, a can of sliced mandarin oranges, and some almonds to garnish. Even though Ellie said to slice the almonds, I decided they would be nice on there whole so I just served it that way.
The dressing is a mash-up of so many of my favorite Asian flavors. There's soy sauce and rice vinegar, ginger and garlic, brown sugar, sesame oil, and sriracha (our new favorite condiment). I actually left the canola oil out of the dressing, and I loved it. I am usually decreasing the oils in my homemade dressings just to make them lower in fat, but here I really liked just having sesame oil in there for the flavor aspect. I only used 1 Tablespoon, and I felt like it was plenty of oil. I do wish I had spinkled some sesame seeds over the finished salad, but overall I loved this. I adore the ease, the lack of cooking required, and it packs a huge punch of flavor for something so healthy and quick. I'm pretty excited that I get to have the leftovers for lunch tomorrow!
Thanks to Danica for the perfect pick this week. I feel silly now for overlooking this Ellie recipe for so long! I think the mandarin oranges were scaring me away, since I don't really eat them. Now I know I have nothing to fear! They almost melted away in the salad, leaving only that great citrus flavor. I'm happy I didn't leave them out like I was tempted to do.
If you'd like this recipe, you can find it on Food Network's website, here. For the CEIMB blogroll, click here.