I do love a good chicken salad, and I am always working on new and different versions. This Asian inspired iteration relies on the wonderful sesame mayonnaise, a recipe I used for years when I first started entertaining, as a dip for asparagus spears or snap peas. I started making it when Asian ingredients like sesame oil and rice vinegar weren’t as readily available as they are now, so it always struck a note of the exotic. I’ve kept that recipe on one of those personalized recipe cards that used to be such popular hostess gifts. I returned to the mayonnaise recipe recently and realized how incredibly versatile it is. I whipped up a little cold chicken supper with leftovers from the fridge, and it was such a good idea, I had to turn it into a summery chicken salad recipe.
Serve this chicken salad in lettuce cups with lime wedges to squeeze over it. I also like it scooped up with rice crackers.
This will make more mayonnaise than you need. Toss it with cold rice or ramen noodles for a lovely side dish, spread it on a bahn-mi style sandwich. It’s a different twist for a burger or a chicken sandwich. Try it with roasted asparagus or steamed snap peas. I’ve even served this as a dip for grilled shrimp.
- Sesame Mayonnaise
- 1 whole egg
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 ½ Tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 ½ Tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup sesame oil
- 1 ¾ cups vegetable oil, like grapeseed or canola
- Chicken Salad
- 3 bone-in, skin on chicken breasts
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 4 green onions, finely chopped
- ½ cup roasted and salted peanuts, chopped
- ¼ cup finely chopped mint
- ¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
- Place the egg, egg yolks, soy sauce, vinegar, mustard and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Process until the ingredients are combined. With the motor running, drizzle in the sesame and vegetable oils in a slow, steady stream. Process until the mixture is creamy, thick and emulsified. You will actually hear the food processor change sounds from smooth blending to a wet slapping sound.
- When the mayonnaise is thick, scrape it into a container, cover it tightly and refrigerate for at least two hours to firm up and allow the flavors to meld.
- Preheat the oven to 400°. Lightly salt the chicken breasts and place on a baking tray. Roast for about 20 – 25 minutes until the chicken is cooked through (internal temperature of 165°). Let the chicken cool to room temperature, then pull of the skin, pull the meat from the bones and shred into a bowl, either using two forks or your fingers.
- Add the carrots, green onions, peanuts, cilantro and mint to the chicken in the bowl and toss to combine. Add 1 cup of the sesame mayonnaise and stir to coat.
- The chicken salad will keep, covered, in the fridge for a few days. The mayonnaise will keep, covered, for 4 days.