This fresh Asian Chicken salad sports summery and flavorful watermelon rind pickle in addition to the traditional ingredients. We’ve got a great recipe for the dressing, so keep on reading.
You really can throw just about anything in this salad, but the pickled watermelon rind really makes it special. This is a salad you can have all year, even on the coldest winter day when the sweetness of summer is a distant memory. Can’t find pickled watermelon rind at the store? You can find it on Amazon, or you can pickle your own. It’s not that difficult, I promise!
Let’s Talk About the Dressing
I’ll be honest. I love the flavor of toasted sesame oil in Asian salad dressing. There are many on the market. Choose the one you like, or you can try mine. It’s a mixture of spices, including ground anise and ground cinnamon.
To keep dressing from separating, use dry mustard. That will help to make the emulsion strong and stay together. It also adds a little zing. Since there is a bit of a chemical process going on, don’t try to throw everything in a blender and hope for the best. I have a liner on my countertop to keep bowls from moving when I’m whisking with one hand and pouring with the other. If you don’t have that, use a kitchen towel and put it under the bowl to keep your bowl steady. Putting the oil in a slow, steady stream wins the race!
I happened to have some sliced deli chicken on hand when I made the salad, but you can use rotisserie chicken or any cooked chicken you happen to have on hand,
~~ -- For the Dressing -- ~~
- ¼ teaspoon Dry mustard
- 1 tablespoon Rice vinegar
- ½ teaspoon Coriander, ground
- ¼ teaspoon Cinnamon, ground
- ¼ teaspoon Anise, ground
- ½ teaspoon White pepper
- 1 teaspoon Ginger, ground
- ¼ teaspoon Cayenne
- 1 teaspoon Soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon Sesame Oil, toasted
- ¼ cup Peanut oil, recommended, but any flavorless oil will do
- 1 tablespoon Sesame seeds, toasted
~~ -- For the Salad -- ~~
- 1 head Romaine
- ½ cup Chicken, cooked and cut into bite size pieces
- ¼ cup Bell pepper, minature sweet preferred
- ¼ cup Carrot, grated
- 1 cup Mandarin Oranges
- 2 tablespoon Peanuts
- ¼ cup Pickled watermelon rind, sliced
For the dressing
- 1/2 teaspoon Coriander, 1/4 teaspoon Cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon Anise, 1/2 teaspoon White pepper, 1 teaspoon Ginger, 1/4 teaspoon CayenneMix the coriander, cinnamon, anise, white pepper, ginger, and cayenne together in a small bowl and set it aside.
- 1/4 teaspoon Dry mustardPut the mustard in the bottom on a mixing bowl
- 1 tablespoon Rice vinegarAdd the rice vinegar.
- 1 tablespoon Sesame OilAdd the sesame oil to the rice vinegar and stir.
- 1/4 cup Peanut oil, 1 teaspoon Soy sauceAdd the spice mixture and whisk it around so it is thoroughly mixed in. With one hand holding the whisk, start slowly adding the oil in a slow, steady steam all the while whisking. Do this until the mixture thickens. Taste it and add the soy sauce.
- 1 tablespoon Sesame seedsTaste it again and see if you need to add more of anything else.you need to add. Finally, add the seame seeds and stir to combine. You can refiregerate the dressing if you want.
To Make the Salad
- 1 head Romaine, 1/2 cup Chicken, 1/4 cup Bell pepper, 1/4 cup Carrot, 1 cup Mandarin Oranges, 2 tablespoon Peanuts, 1/4 cup Pickled watermelon rindTo make the salad, tear the lettuce into bite size pieces and slice the peppers into thin slices. Put the lettuce, peppers, carrots, oranges, peanuts and chicken into a large bowl. Toss with the dressing and garnish with the sliced watermelon rind pickles. Enjoy!