Salad Days.

3 Jul

Crispy Won-Ton Chicken Salad


3 tablespoons rice vinegar

3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

2 tablespoons peach or apricot preserves

2 tablespoons mayonnaise

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon chili powder

½ teaspoon onion powder



8 ounces cooked chicken meat, torn into bite-size pieces (2 cups)*

8 wonton wrappers

 Vegetable oil, for frying


2 romaine hearts, coarsely chopped

4 scallions, coarsely chopped

1 packed cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro leaves with tender stems

1 packed cup coarsely chopped fresh mint leaves

Make the dressing: In a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, sesame oil, peach preserves, mayonnaise, soy sauce, chili powder and onion powder, and season to taste with salt. 

Prepare the salad: Add the chicken to the dressing and toss.

To fry the wonton wrappers, cut the squares into 1/2-inch strips, then cut those strips in half crosswise to shorten them. In a medium saucepan, heat an inch of oil over medium to 350 degrees, or until a wonton strip immediately bubbles when added. Carefully add the wonton strips to the hot oil and, stirring constantly with a slotted spoon, fry until puffy and golden, 30 seconds to 2 minutes. Transfer the crispy wontons to a paper towel-lined plate and season with salt.

Assemble the salad: Add the chopped romaine, scallions, cilantro, mint and half of the fried wontons to the bowl with the dressed chicken, and toss to combine. Season with salt as needed. Top with the remaining fried wontons and serve immediately.

*Use leftover roasted chicken – or chopped up rotisserie chicken or even better, soup chicken – what I call liquid gold – chicken simmered long and slow to make chicken soup. I pick up already cooked and cut-up rotisserie chicken whenever it’s on sale and stash it in the freezer!

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