Sesame chicken salad with cucumber noodles

A refreshing light meal with cucumber noodles and Asian flavours. This is the perfect way to use up leftover chicken or serve instead with a little fish or sliced seared beef.
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Raw chopped pak choi works well in this recipe, but Chinese-style cabbage or finely shredded English cabbage are also good substitutes. Eat this within a few hours as the cucumber will start to get watery or make everything else up in advance and prepare the cucumber noodles just before serving. 

For the salad
* 2 tbsp black or white sesame seeds
* 2 cucumbers
* 1 small head of romaine or cos lettuce, shredded into ribbons
* 1 small head of pak choi or 150 g Chinese cabbage, shredded into ribbons
* 3 spring onions, thinly sliced
* a handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
* 250g cooked shredded chicken

For the sesame dressing
* 5 tbsp sesame oil (not toasted) or extra virgin olive oil
* 2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
* juice of 1 lime or 3 tbsp
* lemon juice
* 2 tsp raw runny honey
* 1 tsp tamari or sea salt
* 1 finely chopped red chilli, to garnish

No leftover chicken? Roast 2 large chicken thighs at fan 200°C/Gas mark 7 for 25–30 minutes until cooked, then shred quickly with two forks to cool the meat quickly. 

1. Gently toast the sesame seeds in a dry pan until fragrant.

2. Use a spiralizer or julienne peeler to make the cucumber noodles. Or use a regular vegetable peeler to slice the cucumbers lengthways into wide pappardelle-style ribbons.You might want to cut the long, spiralized strands in half to make them easier to eat.

3. Prepare the dressing by whisking together all the ingredients in a bowl or shaking them together in a jam jar.

4. Add the lettuce, pak choi, spring onion and coriander to a bowl.

5. Pour over the dressing and mix everything together (hands are best).

6. Plate up with some shredded chicken and top with toasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

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Extracted from The Art of Eating Well by Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley (Ebury Press, £25).


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