Monday, May 6, 2013

Grilled Ginger-Sesame Chicken Salad

http://menumusings.blogspot.com/
I found this recipe from celebrity chef Curtis Stone in one of my magazines, pulled it out, and knew I had to make it.  I am SO happy that I did!  The salad was easy to make, FULL of HUGE flavors, and very little fat.  The dressing that doubles as the marinade for the grilled chicken, gives us salty soy, sweet hoisin, spicy sriracha, and rich sesame oil all dancing together in this amazing dressing. In short - Yes!  It's amazing!! What a hit this would be at a pot luck gathering!

Ingredients: 

Marinade and dressing -

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 3 Tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp sriracha sauce
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 large chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onions (white and green parts)
Salad
  • 1 lb Napa cabbage, very thinly sliced**
  • 2 carrots, grated 
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced and cut on the diagonal
  • 2/3 cup freshly cut cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, dry toasted
  • 1 tsp white sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 tsp black sesame seeds, toasted.
**Can substitute romaine lettuce for Napa cabbage if desired.

Step-by-Step:

Marinade.
Whisk together the soy sauce, ginger, canola oil, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, sriracha, and salt to make the marinade. 
1/4 cup soy sauce
Peel and finely chop or grate the ginger.   Even better if you can find a cute little person to help you.

3 Tbsp minced ginger.
1/4 cup canola oil.
2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp sriracha sauce
1 tsp kosher salt
Now give it all a good mix... and SMELL it!  Wow, you HAVE to smell this!!   Too bad there's no scratch and sniff on the screen.
Trim the chicken breasts of any fat, and add them into a gallon zip top bag.  This is my favorite way to marinate things, rather than in a bowl.  Once you squeeze out all the air, it forces the liquid to envelope the meat all at once.  AND you can just throw it away afterwards.
Add 3 - 4 Tbsp of the marinade to the chicken.   
Note** - You are going to reserve the rest of the sauce that we just made (the part that is still in the mixing bowl).  It will become the dressing later, and it should never touch the raw chicken.  
Squeeze it all up!
Pound it to a uniform thickness.  This will allow them to cook more evenly and also help tenderize the meat.  Allow the flattened chicken breasts to marinade 30 minutes. 
This happens to be another step that little ones love to help with!  Get them involved!  They are much more likely to try things that they've helped to catch, grow, harvest, or create... and you are building precious memories in addition to skills.



Dressing.
To the reserved marinade, add in the 1/4 cup each of red wine vinegar and sliced green onions.  Now we have the dressing.

Grill the chicken.
To a hot grill pan (yes, an outdoor grill or 'regular' pan is fine), add the marinated chicken breasts.  I sprayed the pan with a little cooking spray prior to heating it up.  How HUGE are these chicken breasts?!  Wow!!
Cook them about 4 minutes per side or until there is no sign of pink, and juices run clear when pierced with a small, sharp knife. 
Transfer the chicken breasts to a cutting board and allow them to rest 15 minutes.  Please don't cut them right away... all the juices will run out leaving you with dry meat!  After the 15 minutes, you will cut them crosswise into 1/4" inch thick slices.

Salad.
In a large bowl, add the cabbage, carrots, green onions, cilantro, half of the sesame seeds, and half of the almonds. 
1 whole Napa cabbage - not the tough core.
2 carrots, grated
3 green onions - sliced thinly on an angle
2/3 cup lightly packed cilantro, rough chopped
Dry toast your almonds before adding them. 
1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds
Add the chicken and mix together. 
I added the pan drippings over the salad.  There was just too much "yumminess" left to throw it away.
Add just enough of the dressing to coat the salad lightly and toss together. 

Serve.  
Distribute salad among 4 - 6 plates.  Re-whisk the dressing and drizzle a little over each salad.  Garnish with the remaining almonds and sesame seeds on each salad.   

Gorgeous, isn't it?!

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Written Method:
Marinade.
Whisk together the soy sauce, ginger, canola oil, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, sriracha, and salt to make the marinade.  Put the two chicken breasts in a gallon sized zip-top bag and add 3-4 Tbsp of the marinade over the chicken.  Reserve the rest of the marinade for the dressing.  Squeeze the air out of the bag so that the marinade comes into contact with the meat.  With a meat pounder (or heavy pan, or empty bottle), pound the breasts to a uniform thickness.  This will allow them to cook more evenly and also help tenderize the meat.  Allow the flattened chicken breasts to marinade 30 minutes.

Dressing. To the reserved marinade, add in the vinegar and green onions.  Now we have the dressing.

Grill the chicken. To a hot grill pan (yes, an outdoor grill or 'regular' pan is fine), add the marinated chicken breasts.  cook them about 4 minutes per side or until there is no signs of pink and juices run clear when pierced with a small, sharp knife.  Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and allow them to rest 15 minutes.  Please don't cut them right away... all the juices will run out leaving you with dry meat!  After the 15 minutes, you will cut them crosswise into 1/4" inch thick slices.

Salad. In a large bowl, add the cabbage, carrots, green onions, cilantro, half of the sesame seeds, and half of the almonds.  Add the chicken and mix together.  Add just enough of the dressing to coat the salad lightly and toss together.

Serve.  Distribute salad to 4 - 6 plates.  Re-whisk the dressing and drizzle a little over each salad.  Garnish with the remaining almonds and sesame seeds on each salad.   

47 comments:

  1. This popped on my pinterest board just now and I am heading out the door to buy the ingredients. NO JOKE. Can't wait to try it and it fits our dietary restrictions too!

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    1. Wow! LOVE that kind of reader response! I hope you absolutely LOVE it!!
      Julie

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    2. won.t the uncooked chicken in the marinade taint the dressing

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    3. Hello there, Anonymous. Per recipe instructions, you only add 3 - 4 Tbsp of the marinade to the raw chicken. The rest that you've just made doubles as the dressing. Don't worry... the rest of it NEVER touches the raw chicken.

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  2. I hosted an Asian themed dinner party this weekend and wondered what I would do with the leftover ingredients. This is Perfect!!! I can't wait to get home and start cooking!! Thanks for posting :)

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    1. Amanda -
      How cool!!! So glad that worked out for you. I do hope you will enjoy this delicious Left-over-party-salad!
      Julie

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  3. So i tried this recipe (with one minor change) and while I like it, i thought it was WAY too salty. And I didn't even add the extra salt the marinade called for. I would definitely recommend using low sodium soy sauce. The only change i made was that I added ramen noodles to it to provide an added crunch. Other than that, not bad. Its not quite what I was looking for so I may continue my search, or keep tweaking this as a base recipe. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Melissa -

      Ramen noodles sounds like a great addition! And certainly, low sodium soy is an option for those wanting less salt. Thanks for trying it out.
      Julie

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    2. Oh... I'm not saying you did this, but just a note to other folks... Do make sure to use Kosher salt, NOT regular table salt. That would be extremely salty.

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  4. Hi there~ I've made this recipe twice now & it's been a big hit! Love the fresh ginger in the marinade & dressing! I too might add ramen noodles or won ton strips for a little added crunch next time:) Thanks for sharing a great recipe!

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    1. Julie - I'm so pleased that you enjoyed it! Please stop by again sometimes.
      Julie

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  5. Hi, I tried making this tonight, because my husband and I are trying to get healthy. My husband, who hates salad went crazy over this. He took three servings and finished it off. It was very filling. The dressing is incredible. I think I will be making a huge batch of it, and keeping it for any salads I make. Also, the ramen noodles are good idea. Going to try that next time. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

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  6. This looks so delicious. I can't wait to try it! Question, where did you get those cute measuring spoon "cups"?

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    Replies
    1. Thanks!

      Let's see... I used a variety in this recipe. LOL. The pewter measuring cups with the dragonflies on them were a Mother's Day gift several years ago. They came from the Tin Woodsman. (See attached link). The small silver measuring spoons were also a gift. I don't know where they came from, but I've seen similar ones in various gift shops. The Oriental measuring spoons that are in the shape of little cups (see Lily measuring the kosher salt) came from Pier One Imports.

      Hope that helps! I do hope you try the recipe, and let me know how it comes out for you. :) Oh- and don't forget to subscribe to the blog so you won't miss anything!
      Julie

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  7. Saw this on Pinterest and ran up to Publix to get the needed items on the list! Our family loves everything Asian!! I am taking a short cut..(yes, I'm that lazy) I purchased already cooked roasted chickens and will de-bone and toss in your fabulous sauce recipe, just enough to warm and season the chicken..then serving the salad over Annie Chun's Mai-fun chilled rice noodles for my hubby who needs a little more than a salad.. thanks for the recipe! It looks yummy!!
    Judy

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    Replies
    1. okay, you win!! the roasted chicken was good, but a little mushy with the sauce. Next time I'll plan ahead and grill the chicken. loved it otherwise, thank you for sharing!
      Judy

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    2. Judy -

      NO way, girl!!! There's no winning and losing here. Just sharing with all of our other "kitchen sisters" out there!!! Someone will have had the same question, so thanks for the update! :)

      Julie

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    3. Julie-

      I'm always looking for fast, easy, delicious, recipes. Sometimes experimenting can be costly, those cooked chickens were 8.00 each!! I used two!! That's what going on inside my head!

      I will continue to peruse your Blog and try more recipes. I think your Cajun Chicken salad is next! keep up the great work!

      Judy

      Delete
  8. Made this for dinner tonight it was really yummy - thanks! I sub. honey for the hoisin sauce and added a big squeeze of lemon juice - the salt ratio was fine :) I will definitely make this again and add water chestnuts for extra crunch. Oh and we threw in some golden raisins.

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  9. I made this for dinner last night and had to say that it was fantastic. That dressing is out of this world! I can't wait to have it for leftovers today for lunch! Do you mind if I share it on my blog as long as I link it back to your site and give you the credit?!

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  10. This was insanely delicious! It's so light and refreshing yet very satisfying. I made it with a pre-made carrot/ radish/ pepper mix instead of just the carrots and it was nice to have the extra crunch and veggies. I also though that it was would be really easy to make the chicken the night before and serve it cold in the salad to keep prep on a weeknight even easier. This is going into the regular rotation! Thanks so much!

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  11. Hi, just wanted to let you know I'll be featuring this recipe on my blog this Saturday in my weekly series called Saturday Night Share. Thank you for such a mouthwatering recipe.

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  12. This grilled ginger sesame chicken salad is one of the healthy salad recipes that i know you can make on a dinner date. It will surely make your night special.

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  13. this sounds really delicious! definitely trying this one this week!

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  14. I made this today for dinner. I had to use red cabbage instead of Napa cabbage (never even heard of that), and I couldn't get hold of cilantro... apparently that's not an ingredient you can buy in supermarkets here. But it was amazing! The most delicious salad I've ever eaten. The marinade on that chicken is sensational! I'll definitely be keeping this recipe to make again and again. :)

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  15. Wow delicious! Made this for dinner last night and I think my husband if finally convinced that salad can be a "whole meal" What a keeper - thanks for sharing

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  16. I pinned this recipe onto my Pinterest board a couple weeks back and today I finally had the chance to make this and let me tell you, I will never look at salad the same way again. The ginger and the sesame oil dressing kicked it up a notch and it was delicious!

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  17. Had this yesterday at my MOPS meeting /potluck brunch and it was incredible. Can't wait to make it myself. Peanuts would be good in place of almonds too. Mmmmm.

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  18. OK. I'm signing up for your emails right now! What a great, different, taste-that-goes-bang-in-your-mouth recipe! I see a lot of good recipes from you. Thanks for your blog! PS- I'd rather comment as myself on Pinterest, but there's not much choice in the comment section. :(

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  19. Thank you,thank you, I love this salad.

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  20. Thanks for making this! It brought me back to 1999 where I paid $2 for this same amazing salad every week at work. Made it tonight and your recipe was just as tasty and amazing!

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  21. Absolutely the BEST salad I have ever had! Seriously!!! Thanks :)

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  22. Loved this recipe! Unfortunately, I didn't have all the ingredients, so I was cilantro-less and used fresh red onion instead of green. I also didn't have hoisin, but I was able to sub a thick fig balsamic sauce that I had in the cupboard. I added some thinly sliced and lightly stir-fried bell pepper. Delicious! My husband said no fewer than three times how much he liked it. This would be a great way to use up a lot of leftover vegetables too! Thanks!

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  23. I made this last night but swapped out chicken breast for pork tenderloin. I doubled the marinade/dressing since I was making 2 tenderloins and marinated for about 8 hours. I cooked them outside on my charcoal grill. WOW WOW WOW!!! The taste was amazing. I had to keep smacking away my wife's and 9 year old's hands from cutting off pieces while I had the meat resting. So juicy and packed with flavor. Thank you so much for this wonderful recipe.

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    Replies
    1. Substituting pork tenderloin for the chicken rocks!!! I don't know why I haven't thought of that... but next time I make this recipe, I might just have to give that a shot!!!
      Hope you'll consider subscribing to the blog, so I won't have to refer to you as "Mr Anonymous." :) So glad your family enjoyed the recipe.
      Julie

      Delete
  24. I tried this last night for the first time. My husband and I just LOVED it! I'll definitely make it again. Will start following you on Pinterest!
    Thanks for sharing this!
    KZK

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  25. Thoughts on serving this over shredded Brussels or just regular romaine?

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    1. I think the Napa cabbage works well because of the crunch, and it does stay a bit crunchy. I honestly never considered either of the above, but I don't see a thing wrong with your choices. We love Brussels sprouts.... I'd shred them on a mandoline in that case. Hey, if you decide to try it, will you give me a shout and let me know how it goes? :)
      Julie

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  26. Oh sweet I've never tried it this way. ON IT! Thanks for sharing!

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  27. This looks so yummy and is on my meal plan for the this month!!!

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  28. This salad is easy and delicious. A perfect 1 dish dinner.

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  29. Oh wow this salad was amazing!!! I made it Paleo by using Coconut Aminos for the soy sauce and and made my own hoisin sauce to be Paleo friendly. Changed out the srirach just for a couple shakes of sugar free hot sauce. Delicious stuff!!!!

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  30. This was very nice, although we don't like coriander very much. Next time I will leave it out. Lovely flavour. Thanks for a great recipe.

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  31. We love this salad! I skip the cilantro since I don't care for it but I do add chopped kale, red peppers, celery and mandarin slices to the mix. I top it off with won ton pi chips for extra crunch. Delicious!

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  32. This was so yummy!!! I just devoured a whole plate of it! My kids loved it too! I added a little honey to the dressing to give it a little balance. I also used cashews instead of almonds and threw in some mandrin slices. Delicious! Thanks for sharing this recipe!

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  33. Good post Have a good day. Yummy!

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