My sister made this salad last year and I became a huge fan instantly. It’s refreshing, vibrant, full of flavors and great on a hot day!
In my last post I mentioned the Makers Faire that happens annually here in the Bay Area. We went there on a day that is supposed to be the least busy out of the 3 days the faire lasts. The place was packed anyway but we got to see some cool things. There was an entire section dedicated to edible things and how to make them at home. We are talking raw sauerkraut, kombucha, even mushroom jerky! The jerky was actually quite tasty, as was the beet kombucha. I used to make sauerkraut at home a while ago and thought of going back to doing that again.
For people interested in gardening without a lot of space there is a solution!
This entire set costs about $300 and produces ton of vegetables. The pump runs 24/7, you supply the greens with liquid fertilizer through water and you need to monitor the pH often.
Other things we saw were this giant metal squid:
And bikes that, when you pedal, the created energy can be used to make a smoothie in a blender that is attached to the frame. During the Faire you could purchase a smoothie made that way.
Overall, it was a fun event but quite exhausting. Now, about this salad!
Today’s recipe is inspired by Thai salads that are famous for their refreshing vibe and rather complex flavors. Sweet, sour, salty and spicy. That’s what you should taste when making the dressing. It has lots of lime juice, garlic, ginger, honey and few drops of Tabasco sauce. I like to serve the salad with some of the Thai food fixings, like toasted peanuts, chopped cilantro and green onions.
I often make this salad with a combination of mango and papaya, if possible, but using either one makes a delicious salad as well.
This salad takes only a little bit of time to make, especially if you have any leftover chicken. If I don’t have any cooked chicken left, I simply grill a chicken breast seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic powder. When ready to eat, I slice it and serve it on top of the salad with a bit of the saved dressing drizzled on the chicken.
To prepare this salad, peel and dice the fruit. I like the fruit pieces to be not bigger than 1/2 inch. Jicama and carrots should be peeled first then cut into matchsticks or julienned (I use my two-sided vegetable peeler). Bell pepper should be thinly sliced lengthwise. Add a handful of Thai basil or regular basil leaves torn into pieces as well.
Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and prepare the dressing. Zest and juice limes, grate the ginger, press the garlic, and add few drops of Tabasco sauce.
Slowly whisk in the olive oil.
Add most of the dressing to the bowl and gently stir. Assembly the salad by placing a few leaves of a butter lettuce on a plate, then add a serving of the salad. Top it with the sliced chicken, drizzle some of the reserved dressing and add chopped cilantro, green onion and toasted peanuts.
Serves: 2 Prep time: 25 minutes Ready in: 25 minutes
- 1 chicken breast, grilled and sliced
- 2 ripe mangos, peeled and diced into less than 1/2 inch pieces
- 1/3 of papaya, peeled, seeds removed, diced into less than 1/2 inch pieces
- 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks
- 1/3-1/2 medium jicama, peeled and cut into matchsticks
- 1 medium bell pepper, seeds removed, thinly sliced lengthwise
- 5-6 leaves of butter lettuce
- a handful of Thai basil or regular basil, torn into pieces
- 2 small garlic cloves, pressed
- zest from 1 lime
- 2 tablespoons lime juice (from about 2 limes)
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 3-4 drops of Tabasco sauce
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup chopped and toasted peanuts
- chopped cilantro
- chopped green onion
- Prepare the fruit and vegetables: peel the mangos and papaya, remove the pits and seeds, then dice into 1/2-inch cubes. Place in a large bowl. Peel jicama and carrot, cut both into matchsticks. Remove the seeds from the bell pepper and cut it into thin slices lengthwise. Add to the bowl.
- Prepare the dressing by whisking all ingredients together and then slowly adding the olive oil to make the emulsion. Pour most of the dressing onto the salad, reserving about 1 tablespoon. Add torn basil. Stir well but gently.
- Place a few leaves of the butter lettuce onto individual plates (or tear them into smaller pieces and add to the salad). Add a serving of the salad on top, then the sliced chicken and garnish with peanuts, cilantro and green onion. Drizzle the reserved dressing on the chicken. Serve.