Thai-Style Slaw and Chicken
It’s the beginning of the year, and we’ve been making a lot of salads. We like this one because its flavors are a little off the beaten path of our green salads. It’s sweet, it’s spicy, it’s full of chicken and crunchy veggies — carrots, peppers, and cabbage — and it’s got a pleasantly funky fish-sauce umami. It’s also aesthetically pleasing: there’s no messy lettuce, and all the ingredients chop up to about the same size and shape.
Tip: This salad is at its very best the day it’s made, when it’s still crunchy. So it’s a great one to make when you’ve got company. Or to take to a friend’s house: When you ask what you can bring, and they inevitably say, “Salad,” this one will knock their socks off. Especially if you kick up the heat with a little extra Sriracha!
2 chicken breasts
½ cabbage (any variety), shredded
2 Tbsp olive oil, plus more for the chicken
½ tsp kosher salt
1 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
2 to 3 carrots, thinly sliced
6 scallions, thinly sliced
1 small bunch cilantro, roughly chopped to yield about 1 cup
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp lime juice
1 Tbsp fish sauce
4 ½ tsp sugar
½ tsp Sriracha, plus more to taste
Black pepper, to taste
Salt, to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350º.
- Place the chicken breasts on a baking sheet and brush them lightly with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and bake for 20 minutes, or until they reach 165º on an instant-read thermometer. Allow them to cool, and then shred and set aside.
- In the meantime, make the dressing: stir together the lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, and Sriracha.
- In a large salad bowl, combine the cabbage, oil, and salt. Massage the cabbage with your hands: really squeeze it firmly until it shrinks in size and looks saturated.
- Add the peppers, carrots, scallions, cilantro, red onion, and chicken.
- Pour the dressing over the bowl of vegetables and toss to coat evenly. Taste and adjust the salt or Sriracha as needed.
Recipe source: Food 52.