Napa Cabbage - Chinese Chicken Salad

March 10, 2021

Napa Cabbage - Chinese Chicken Salad

For the Chicken
2 quarts water
1/2 tablespoon sea salt
1 star anise
1 tablespoon whole black peppercorn
1 head garlic, sliced in half
1 1-inch piece ginger, crushed with the side of a knife
A few sprigs cilantro
1 scallion, cut into 3 to 4 pieces
2 large chicken breasts (about 1 pound)
For the Salad and Dressing
1 Napa Cabbage
1 Medium Carrot, cut into matchstick-size slivers on a mandolin
1c Mung Bean Sprouts
1 Cucumber, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch moons
2 Scallions, both the white and green parts, cut thin on the bias
1/3c Matchstick-sized slivered radishes
4T Toasted Sesame Oil
2T Lime Juice
1T Soy Sauce
1/2c Whole Cilantro Leaves
1/2c Whole Mint Leaves (optional)
1/2c Whole Thai Basil Leaves (optional)
1/4C Toasted Sesame Seeds
1/4c Crispy Fried Shallots (optional)

To the water, add the salt and all the aromatics and bring up to a boil. Drop the chicken breasts in, stir, and let just come back up to a simmer. Turn off the heat, cover, and let sit, covered in the pot at room temperature, for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, pull the chicken out and set aside to cool. You can strain the water and save it for a tasty soup addition another day or you can throw it all out. 

Meanwhile, shred the napa cabbage by cutting the head in half and then slicing into 1/4- to 1/2-inch-wide ribbons. Toss with the carrots, sprouts, cucumbers, scallions, and radishes. Whisk the dressing ingredients—sesame oil, lime juice, and dark soy sauce—together and pour over the vegetables. 

Using your hands, shred the cooled chicken and add to the salad. If you want, you could let it all marinate together for about 15 minutes or so. When you are ready to serve it, add in the herb leaves and the sesame seeds and toss together. Serve garnished with the crispy fried shallots

Recipe Credit: Food 52