You’ve got to love a salad that does double duty, right?
Not only is this salad good the first time around when you are eating it fresh, but it’s almost even better when you warm it up as leftovers. Tender chunks of garlicky ginger chicken, honey roasted peanuts, spring onions and fresh cilantro top a bed of crunchy, shredded napa cabbage. Sprinkle your salad with a light and tangy sesame soy vinaigrette and a splash of fresh lime.
Ready for leftovers? Heat a splash of dressing in a saute pan and cook till warm and the cabbage is caramelized!
I love all the curly, crinkly crevices of napa cabbage. Honestly, I love eating it shredded with balsamic vinaigrette. But it’s perfect in this peanutty chicken salad that bridges the gap between seasons. If you’re growing tired of summer produce (did I really say that?), and not quite ready for ‘pumpkin everything’, then this salad is the way to go! The spicy sesame soy vinaigrette makes a perfect marinade, too!
Warm summer weather can linger well into the fall. And this is a nice light salad to enjoy when you are trying to beat the heat. But for those chillier days and nights, toss everything together in a big saute pan or wok, for a warm and toasty treat.
The chicken is sweet, salty & peanutty and you’ll be eating it right out of the pan. The sesame soy vinaigrette is pretty versatile. I enjoy it simply as a dressing for some finely shredded napa. And I’ve used it as a marinade for shrimp. As a matter of fact, I think this salad would be equally good with shrimp or pork. Add some chile flakes to kick up the heat if that’s your thing.
Hang on to summer as you ease into fall. This Peanut Chicken & Napa Salad has you covered!
- FOR THE CHICKEN SALAD:
- 1½ pounds of skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch chunks
- 1 Tablespoon of peanut oil
- ⅓ cup of honey roasted peanuts
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon of minced fresh ginger
- ⅓ cup of sliced green onions
- 1 Tablespoon of reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 Tablespoon of rice vinegar
- 2 teaspoons of toasted sesame oil
- 1 cup of fresh cilantro
- lime wedges (optional)
- FOR THE DRESSING:
- 2 Tablespoons of toasted sesame oil
- 2 Tablespoons of light brown sugar
- 4 Tablespoons of reduced sodium soy sauce
- 6 Tablespoons of fresh lime juice
- 6 Tablespoons of vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons of Thai chile paste (I used Gourmet Garden)
- In a small bowl, whisk all the ingredients for the dressing together, season with salt & pepper to your liking, and set aside.
- In a large skillet or wok, heat the peanut oil over medium high heat.
- Add the chicken and cook and stir for 2 minutes.
- Add the peanuts, garlic and ginger.
- Cook and stir for an additional 2-3 minutes or until the chicken is no longer pink.
- Add the green onions, soy sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil.
- Cook and stir for another minute or two.
- Take the pan off the heat and stir in the cilantro.
- Spoon the mixture over the shredded cabbage.
- Sprinkle with additional fresh cilantro if desired.
- Serve with lime wedges and the sesame soy vinaigrette on the side.