Vietnamese Chicken Salad
with vermicelli / carrots / cucumbers / lime dressing
We featured a vermicelli chicken salad in July 2015 and our community loved the fresh flavors in the hot summer months. This revised version gives you the option to make extra salad components and turn them into summer rolls on Wednesday so you'll spend even less time in the kitchen this week.
- Ginger - 1 inch
- Brown sugar - 2 Tbsp
- Vinegar, rice - 2 Tbsp
- Fish sauce - 4 Tbsp
- Limes, juice - 2
- Water - 2 Tbsp
- Red pepper flakes (opt) - 1/2 tsp
- Green onions, green parts only - 2 , minced
- Chicken breasts, boneless and skinless - 1 lb , sliced
- Honey - 3 Tbsp
- Soy sauce, low-sodium - 3 Tbsp
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
- Noodles, thin rice vermicelli - 3 oz (find these in the ethnic food aisle or sub soba or spaghetti)
- Carrots - 5 oz , matchsticks (look for pre-shredded)
- Cucumbers - 8 oz , matchsticks
- Green lettuce, small - 1 head , chopped
- Mint, fresh - 8 leaves , chopped
- Peanuts, roasted and unsalted - 1/2 cup
- Vietnamese dressing with lime (ingredients listed separately) - ~3/4 cup
Marinate chicken - (Double if making Wednesday's dinner.) Cut chicken into 1” (2.5 cm) cubes. Combine honey and soy sauce and pour over chicken pieces. Marinate for at least 30 minutes and up to a day. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
Make dressing - Grate ginger. Combine with sugar, vinegar, fish sauce, lime juice, water and red pepper flakes (if using). (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
Cook rice noodles - (Double if making Wednesday's dinner.) Cook according to package instructions. If not using right away, rinse noodles under cool water and store in an airtight container. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
Lettuce / Mint / Green onions - Prep as directed. Reserve green parts of green onions and discard white parts (or use for another recipe).
Heat a wok or saute pan over medium-high heat. Add oil. Use a slotted spoon to transfer chicken to hot pan, reserving marinade. Saute until chicken is nearly cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Add remaining marinade and cook until marinade reduces and coats chicken, ~2 minutes. (If doubled, remember to reserve half the cooked chicken for Wednesday.)
Whisk dressing and sprinkle green onions over the top.
Assemble salads by combining lettuce, noodles, cucumbers, carrots and chicken in serving bowls. (If noodles and chicken were doubled, remember to save half for Wednesday.) Top with mint and peanuts. Pour dressing over salad just before serving and toss well. Enjoy!