Roast chicken and rice salad

April 14, 2010

This is what you make if you’ve managed not to eat all of your saffron and hazelnut roast chicken in one go. It’s far more interesting than the name suggests, although to be fair the original name was ‘roast chicken and three-rice salad’ – only mine only had two kinds of rice, and I thought ‘two-rice salad’ sounded a bit odd. Also, I don’t think the taste would suffer if you were to use just one bog-standard rice, which is helpful if you have leftover cooked rice as well as leftover cooked chicken, in which case this is really quite quick to make. It would make an enviable packed lunch. Not quite enough to make me stop feeling smug about having finished work, though.

Roast chicken and rice salad  Serves 2

I always get annoyed when people write in to the Guardian to complain about how they can’t make any of Yotam Ottolenghi’s New Vegetarian recipes because the ingredients are all obscure. Generally I think that if I can get these things in Oxford, hardly a buzzing modern metropolis, then it shouldn’t be impossible. But in this case I have to admit that I was a bit stumped on shiso leaves, so I used rocket instead.

Leftover roast chicken meat (use whatever you have – I used a breast and a wing)
150g cooked rice (I used brown rice and camargue red rice, or cook about 75g rice from scratch.)
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
3 spring onions, thinly sliced
1 red chilli, seeded and thinly sliced
large handful of coriander, chopped
small handful of mint, chopped
10 shiso leaves or a couple of handfuls of rocket, roughly chopped
salt and pepper

For the dressing:
2 tbsp lemon juice (about half a lemon)
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp olive oil

If you need to cook your rice, start by doing that. Wild rice and brown rice can take about 50 minutes to cook and you’ll need to give it time to cool down before making the salad.

Either carve the meat from the chicken or just tear it off into largish pieces. Put it in a bowl big enough to mix the whole salad. Whisk all the dressing ingredients together and pour over the chicken.

Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and fry the onion with a pinch of salt until crisp and golden. Set aside to cool.

Add the rice, fried onion, spring onion, chilli, chopped herbs and rocket to the chicken. Mix well and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

Adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi’s ‘Ottolenghi’.

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