Thursday, July 7, 2011

Shredded Chicken Salad

This recipe for Shredded Chicken Salad is a riff on the Chinese Chicken Salad that I posted a few weeks back.  The fresh salad ingredients are similar but the preparation and dressing are completely different.  It is said to be the recipe used by Ming's in Palo Alto.  I cut the original recipe out of the local newspaper earlier this spring and modified it.  Here is my version:

4 Chicken Quarters
1/4  Cup  Soy Sauce
2  Tablespoons Oil
2  Tablespoons White Wine
3  Cloves Garlic, minced or pressed
1/4  Teaspoon Dry Ginger
1/2  Teaspoon Chinese 5-Spice Powder, or substitute with Ground Cinnamon
6  Cups  finely shredded Romaine Lettuce
2  Bunches Cilantro  (yes, you really do want that much)
3-5  Green Onions, sliced on the diagonal
1/4  Cup  toasted Seasame Seeds
1 to 1 1/2  Cups salted Cashew Pieces
Black Pepper
2  Ounces Maifun (also called cellophane or rice noodles), fried according to instructions in the Chinese Chicken Salad Recipe

1/2  Teaspoon  Dry Mustard
1  Teaspoon  Sugar
2  Teaspoons  Soy Sauce
1  Tablespoon  Lemon Juice
Reserved Broth from Baked Chicken Quarters

Preheat oven to 400*.

In a small bowl, combine Soy Sauce, Oil, White Wine, Garlic, Ginger and Chinese 5-Spice Powder.  Rub both sides of Chicken Quarters with the Spice Mop.

Arrange Chicken Quarters, skin side up, on a greased baking sheet, and bake at 400* until tender and well-browned, about 45 minutes.  Remove Chicken Quarters to a cooling rack.  Transfer broth to a small bowl and freeze until fat has solidified.  Discard fat and set aside 1/2 Cup Broth for Dressing.  When Chicken Quarters are cool, strip the meat from bones and shred.

In a large bowl, combine Shredded Chicken, Cilantro and Green Onion.  Add Seasame Seeds and 3/4 cup of Cashew pieces.  Season with Black Pepper to taste.

Combine Dressing Ingredients, adding 1/4 Cup of reserved Broth.  Taste, adding more Broth as needed to flavor.  Toss Chicken mixture with dressing, adding more reserved Broth if needed to fully coat.  Stir in Maifun Noodles and top with remaining Cashews.  Serves 6.

And here are my tasters, who all approved of this recipe:

(Those peaches are the first crop off our own trees.  Don't they look yummy?)

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