This recipe is so amazing- somehow, leftover chicken seems to be transformed into crispy duck. I have actually been waiting for over a year to make this, ever since I saw Jamie do it last Christmas, and I'm so glad I finally got round to it.
I wasn't sure this would be enough for a main course, but as long as you use a fair amount of chicken, you won't feel like you're eating just a salad. Apart from the volume of chicken, I think the range of flavours also contribute to making this a more substantial dinner- the dressing is really packed full of flavour, and the pomegranate seeds, mint, cashews and cranberries add little packets of extra taste (and texture) throughout.
This works well served with pancakes- the recipe is included in a separate post. The dressing makes quite a lot- enough for at least 12 people, so freeze it for the next time you want to make this (because there will be a next time).
Asian Inspired Crispy Chicken Salad with Pancakes
4 handfuls brown cooked chicken meat
1 large handful cashew nuts
1 large handful dried cranberries
2tsp five spice
1 bunch fresh mint leaves
1 bunch fresh coriander leaves
mixed salad leaves
1tbsp runny honey
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
1 clementine’s juice
1 lime’s juice
½ red onion, peeled and coarsely grated
extra virgin olive oil
1tbsp soy sauce
1tsp sesame oil
1-2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely grated
1. For the dressing, squeeze the clementine and lime juice and the juice of half the pomegranate into a bowl. Add the onion and extra virgin olive oil to taste- the ratio should be about 1:3 acid to oil. Stir in the soy sauce and sesame oil and the juice from the ginger- discard the pulp.
2. Shred the chicken meat and add to a dry frying pan over a medium heat, then add the cashew nuts, cranberries and five spice. Shake the pan occasionally as it cooks.
3. Put the salad leaves, mint and most of the coriander into a salad bowl and dress with enough of the dressing to lightly coat.
4. Once the chicken has heated through, add the honey and increase the heat. Continue cooking for a couple of minutes to crispen- up.
5. Toss about half the chicken through the salad and sprinkle the pomegranate seeds from the other half and the chilli over the salad. Serve the rest of the chicken, coriander and some of the dressing individually, alongside the salad with the pancakes.