Does anybody out there know where April went? I feel like we were just welcoming the arrival of the month and now it’s on the way out! Here at The Café, it’s been a super busy month and this Asian Poppy Seed Chicken Salad has made wonderful, healthy meals on the run!
We had our sweet family from England here for a good part of April and we loved every second of their visit ………. though I have to admit, it does keep an old Grammy and Papa busy as little bees! We refer to them, fondly, as “the herd”. There’s always lots of shenanigans going on with four little ones, seven years and under.
I even got a “make-over” one day from our little Elle Belle. She slipped up to me with the sweetest smile and whispered in my ear; “Grammy, would you like a make-over?” What could I say? After she got me all done up with (very) rosy red cheeks, dark, smudgy eyes and bright red lips, she asked if I would “do” her. You should have heard Mommy yelp when we came down for dinner looking like ……….well, let’s just say, we looked like the loveliest of ladies.
I also had a birthday in April and my kids gave me the most fun present ever; they had our dear friend Amy, (who’s also an amazing professional photographer) spend an afternoon with us and shoot all kinds of pictures of the family. She captured some priceless images and I thought I’d share with you a little peek into life at The Café ……….
Did you think I got so carried away with these fun photos that I forgot today’s recipe? No way!! If you love fresh, healthy and crazy delicious, get out your sharpest knife and the cutting board! You’re going to flip over this fabulous salad!
You’ll need a few ingredients from the Asian section of the grocery store; rice vinegar, sesame oil and Sriracha, but the majority of your shopping will be in the vibrantly-hued produce aisle. Be sure to pick up fresh ginger, garlic, a small head of both red and green cabbage, one yellow bell pepper, a few pretty radishes and some basil, mint and cilantro (unless your herb garden is leaping like mine is). Oh, and don’t forget the chicken ………. you can roast your own (this is a wonderful recipe) or make it super simple by using a rotisserie chicken (if you have a Costco nearby, their’s are wonderful!).
Be sure to put this one on your spring/summer menu. It’s fresh, healthy and super delicious!
- For the dressing:
- 2 tablespoons canola or other mild flavored oil
- 1 tablespoon finely zested fresh ginger, use a fine lemon zester or chop very fine
- 2 medium clove garlic, very finely minced or zested (I use my fine lemon zester for this also)
- ⅓ cup rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoon honey
- ½ teaspoon sriacha sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, don't skimp here, you have alot of ingredients to season.
- 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
- For the salad:
- 3 cups finely sliced red cabbage
- 3 cups finely sliced green cabbage
- 1 medium yellow bell pepper, cut into ⅛ inch diced
- 4 medium radishes, thinly sliced, then stacked and thinly julienned
- 4 cups shredded roasted or rotisserie chicken breast
- 1 medium size bunch finely chopped fresh cilantro (Be sure your herbs are dry before chopping or they will turn into a mushy paste.)
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh mint
- ½ cup finely chopped fresh basil
- Heat oil in a small sauce pan over medium low heat (be sure heat is not too high, you don't want the garlic to brown). Add ginger and garlic and stir for 30 seconds or until fragrant.
- Add remainder or dressing ingredients, bring to a boil and stir for 30 seconds or until sugar is completely dissolved. Set aside to cool while chopping your veggies and preparing the rest of the salad.
- Combine all veggies, herbs and shredded chicken. in a large bowl. Add enough dressing to thoroughly coat. Toss to combine. Serve on individual plates or a large platter. Garnish with more fresh herbs, if desired.