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Burmese spiced chicken salad (Kyet thar thoke)

During the summer I like to have a light lunch inthe hot afternoons. I generally like a nice salad that has a touch of protein to keep me happy. No rich food, no fried stuff and nothing greasy as far as possible.

This is one of those amazing salads that is both fresh and delightful. Crunchy Napa cabbage that is tossed in a tangy-spicy dressing and topped with a delicate and juicy spiced roasted chicken. The salad is light, refreshing and filling with wonderful flavors, perfect for the heat.

This book is a recent purchase and one that I am enjoying reading and cooking from. The famed Rangoon sisters, Amy and Emily, have become famous in London for their brillaint Burmese cuisine and pop-up style restaurant cooking. This cookbook is a collection of wonderful recipes and I am definitely cooking from here often.

For more recipes from this wonderful cookbook, click here.


4 boneless chicken thighs, or 2 large chicken breasts

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

Salt, to taste

1/2 Napa (Chinese) cabbage or Savoy or green cabbage, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon chili flakes

2-3 shallots, thinly sliced

2 teaspoons gram flour (besan) lightly toasted

2 teaspoons garlic oil, see note below

Juice of 2-3 limes

A few drops fish sauce

Cilantro, finely minced

Fried shallots

Rub the chicken wit the turmeric, chili powder and salt. Allow to marinate for at least 1 hour.

Grill the chicken on a gas or charcoal grill till cooked through and charred in spots, about 4-5 minutes a side. If you are using chicken breasts, the cooking times could vary.

Alternatively, pre-heat an oven to 375 F.

Roast the chicken in a single layer on a lined baking sheet, about 15 minutes a side, till the chicken is cooked through. You know the chicken is cooked as the juices will run clear when pierced with a knife. If you are using chicken breasts, the cooking times could vary. Cool and shred the chicken by hand. Set aside.

Finally, you can also pan fry the chicken cut into thin strips with a touch of oil on a frying pan till cooked through and crispy on the outside. Set aside.

Mix the cabbage, chili flakes, shallots and gram flour tossing well to allow the flour to lightly coat the vegetables. Set aside till ready to serve.

Make the fried shallots and garlic oil buy heating 4-5 tablespoons of oil in a very small pot. Add about 4 thinly sliced shallots and fry till browned. Remove and set on paper towels to drain. In the same oil add 2-3 garlic cloves finely minced. Fry till the garlic is browned. Cool.

To serve the salad, add the garlic oil, lime juice and fish sauce to the vegetables. Toss well. Add the heated chicken on top and garnish with the cilantro and fried shallots. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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