Shredded Sesame Chicken and Cabbage Salad

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Fed up of the same boring salads for lunch? If you want to keep things fresh without having to prep something new each time then it’s simple to batch cook some protein that can be added to any salad and create a huge bowl of chopped veggies.

You can simply grab a portion of salad, add a different lean protein and make it taste interesting with a variety of dressings.  With this in mind, I set out to beat nutritional boredom by trying something new this weekend.

I’ve never poached a chicken before but I had to road-test this Asian chicken cabbage salad recipe from Ching-He Huang’s ‘Eat Clean’ which I picked up to get some inspo while trying to healthify some of my Asian clients' diets.

I can’t believe I’ve been missing out on poached chicken for so long! Not only is it really easy, it makes a moist and tender protein source that’s easy to flavour. BBQ? No problem. Garlic and white wine? Easy. Ginger and sesame? Simple.

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Now confession time, I didn’t make the Yuzu dressing that Ching-He’s recipe calls for, because I didn’t have the ingredients on hand, so instead I used a sesame dressing from a bottle (gasp of horror!) but sometimes needs must and while the brand had added sugar,  I adjusted the quantities down to keep the recipe fat-loss friendly. I also adapted it slightly to keep the fats a bit lower  but it would taste amazing with some toasted pecans in the garnish as in her book. If I hadn’t indulged in an avocado-fest at brekkie I would have added them in for a nice crunch.

I’m no expert-chef but I managed this in a flash and it wasn’t hard to make with plenty for leftovers too.

Ingredients: (this made enough for 3-4 portions)

  • 3 x 120g chicken breasts
  • 200g red cabbage, chopped
  • 100g raw carrots, julienned
  • 150g sugar snap peas/mangetout
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 inches of ginger sliced
  • Salt to taste (I omitted this)

Garnish:

  • 2 spring onions - chopped

Dressing: 15ml of organic low GI sesame dressing of your choice OR

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon of Japanese Yuzu dressing (a Japanese citrus fruit)
  • 1 teaspoon of coconut aminos OR soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of EVOO
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Make It In A Flash:

  1. Save time and blend the cabbage, mangetout and carrots in a blender, or, if you prefer pretty, blend the cabbage and chop the mangetout diagonally and grate or slice the carrot. Mix it all up in a bowl. (If using a store bought dressings you can add the ginger in with the salad, if not, pop it in the dressing instead.)
  2. Put the chicken in a pot in one single layer and cover with cool water. Smash the garlic cloves and add to the water. Bring the pot to the boil and then lower the heat and simmer for about 8 minutes. Check your chicken is cooked using a thermometer if needed. You’ll see some gunk on the top of the water, which is normal and completely fine to leave as the chicken cooks.
  3. Once done, remove from the water and leave to cool on a board until you can chop it or shred it with a fork or your fingers.  (I made extra and stored the leftovers for another recipe or salad filler).
  4. Serve salad with protein and drizzle and mix the dressing on top, sprinkle with spring onions and check your bad self...you’ve made a killer Asian Chicken salad.

Nutritional Info: ⅓ of the salad mix with 120g of chicken and 15ml of McCormick Sesame Dressing is approx:  Carbs 14g, Protein 42.5g, Fat 10g Calories 320.


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