Asian Chicken Noodle Salad
You can never go wrong with a cold pasta dish. Why? Because other than the dicing and chopping of the various vegetables and such, it’s a quick dish that’s filled with vibrant, fresh flavors and there’s not much cooking involved.
I really enjoyed the variety of vegetables in this dish, from the bell peppers to the broccoli, along with the juicy mandarin oranges and the crunchy sliced almonds throughout. But what really stood out was the flavorful chicken within each bite! Marinating the chicken an hour beforehand goes a long way.
A quick, healthy, hearty, refreshing pasta dish is always a plus in my book.
Asian Chicken Noodle Salad (adapted from For the Love of Cooking):
Yields 4-5 servings
- 1/2 pound spaghetti
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 cup cooked broccoli florets
- 1 red bell pepper, julienned, sauteed or grilled
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 3 green onions, chopped
- 1 cup mandarin oranges, drained
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
For the dressing and marinade:
- 6 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, grated
- 5 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons hot chili sauce
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
In a large bowl, combine the rice vinegar, canola oil, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, soy sauce and chili sauce.
In a large Ziploc bag, add 3-4 tablespoons of the marinade and the chicken breasts; marinate for at least 1 hour. Chill remaining dressing until ready to serve. (This allows the flavors to combine.)
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; rinse with cold water and drain well.
While the pasta is cooking, heat the vegetable oil over medium high heat in a large skillet. Add the chicken and cook, flipping once, until cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side. Let it rest for 5 minutes before slicing. (I prefer my chicken to be thinly sliced.)
In a large bowl, combine the noodles and half the dressing. Let it sit for 20-30 minutes. (This allows the noodles to become very flavorful.)
Add the broccoli florets, bell pepper, carrots, onions, mandarin oranges, cilantro, sliced almond and remaining dressing.
Gently toss to combine.
(Don’t forget to serve these with extra chili sauce drizzled on top for that extra spice. Mmmmmmm.)