This is a classic in my family. I tried to trace its origins, but “Chinese Chicken Salad” has been in the family repertoire for as long as I can remember and I can’t remember even seeing the original. I made it for my husband the first time I cooked for him, and I make it for the three of us regularly still. Even better, I now have a toddler to help me! This is an easy mid-week meal because all of the ingredients hold up well in the fridge, and you can easily cook the chicken ahead of time. Even better, use leftovers or rotisserie chicken.
Asian-y Chicken Salad
1 head of iceberg lettuce, sliced thinly
2 bunches of scallions, sliced thinly
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger (try using a microplane, you really don’t want chunks)
shredded chicken (I usually use 2 chicken breasts)
1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds (buy pre-toasted, or do it yourself in a pan with low heat)
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
Toss the lettuce, scallions, chicken, ginger and sesame seeds together. Hopefully you will have some help with shaking out the sesame seeds:
And now for the dressing. This is a little different from your typical generic Asian salad.
First, use a small pan or pan. Do you have a really ugly, stained old pan? This is the time to use it. Heat the sesame oil until it is hot, but not smoking. You can tell it is ready when a bit of the lettuce sizzles and dances when you drop it in. Turn off the heat, and pour in the soy sauce. Step back, it is going to sizzle! This may be too much dressing, depending on how much lettuce you have. Pour it in a little at a time, remember, you can always add more. Toss and serve over hot rice.