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Chinese Chicken Salad

Lee Harrelson
Yield Serves 6 as a main dish
Many chicken salad recipes feature almonds, which are so expensive that I rarely buy them. However, peanuts are very reasonably priced at Asian markets. Stock them in your pantry, as they're often a good substitute for more expensive nuts.

Ingredients

  • Marinade:
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar or 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • 2 ramen noodle seasoning packets (reserved from ramen noodle packages used in salad)
  • 1 tablespoon peeled and minced fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups cubed chicken breasts or thighs
  • Salad:
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 head Napa cabbage, cut into very thin slivers
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted in a dry skillet over medium heat
  • Three 3-ounce packages oriental- or chicken-flavored ramen noodles, broken

How to Make It

  1. In a 2-cup measuring cup, whisk together first 6 marinade ingredients. In a medium-size bowl, toss chicken with 1/4 cup marinade and marinate for 1 hour.

  2. Heat sesame oil in a medium-size skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, without stirring, until nicely browned on one side, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir and cook until chicken is no longer pink in the center, 5 to 8 more minutes. (If you're short on time, cook chicken immediately after tossing it with marinade.)

  3. Transfer cooked chicken to a large bowl, and add remaining salad ingredients; toss to combine. Pour remaining marinade over salad and toss until everything is well coated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate several hours, or overnight, to let the flavors develop.

Family Feasts for $75 a Week