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Hunan Strange Chicken Salad

Monday, 26 May 2008


This cold chicken salad is not really strange--just delicious! It gets its name from the sauce which is salty, sweet, sour and hot, all in one dish. In the Chinese province of Hunan where the summers are hot, a cool yet pungent entree is always welcome. This is a great way to recycle left-over chicken. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.


At a glance
Cooking Method
No Cook
Heat Level
Red Pepper Flakes
Main Course
4 to 6

For the Dressing:

  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce

  • 1 ½ tablespoon peanut oil

  • 1 tablespoon sesame paste (available in Asian markets) or smooth peanut butter

  • 1 tablespoon Chinese red chile oil (available in Asian markets)

  • 1 tablespoon sugar

  • 2 teaspoons ground Sichuan peppercorns

  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil

  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger

  • ½ teaspoon crushed red chile flakes

For the Salad:

  • 8 ounces cooked chicken, chopped

  • 2 green onions, chopped including some of the greens

  • 1 cucumber, ½ cubed and ½ sliced

  • Shredded lettuce

  • Garnish: 1/4 cup roasted peanuts

  • Crushed red chile flakes

  • Chopped fresh cilantro


In a bowl, combine all the ingredients for the dressing and mix well. Allow the dressing to sit for a couple of hours to blend the flavors.

Toss the chicken, green onions, and cubed cucumber in the dressing. Allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

To serve: Make a bed of the lettuce on individual serving plates. Arrange the sliced cucumbers on the lettuce, top with the chicken salad and garnish with the peanuts, chile flakes, and cilantro.


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