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A brightened up take on an American favorite
Milk Street Bowtie Sichuan Chicken Salad

Sichuan Chicken Salad

1 hour 20 minutes 20 minutes active

Sichuan Chicken Salad

Free

Traditionally, the meat for this salad is pounded to shreds to better absorb the flavorful dressing. We got similar results by mashing it using a sturdy wooden spoon and a bowl. Just don’t use a fragile bowl. We loved the floral, piney notes of Sichuan peppercorns. Toast them over medium heat for about 2 minutes; grind them to a fine powder with a spice grinder or mortar and pestle.

2 10-12-ounce bone-in, skin-on split chicken breasts
6 scallions, white parts coarsely chopped, green parts thinly sliced on a bias, reserved separately
1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, cut into 4 pieces and smashed
2 large garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
Kosher salt
4 cups water
1/4 cup dry sherry (optional)
2 tablespoons chili oil
2 tablespoons tahini
1 1/2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns (optional), toasted and finely ground
1/8-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 large English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise on a bias
1/3 cup dry-roasted peanuts, chopped
Ingredients
  • 2

    10-12-ounce bone-in, skin-on split chicken breasts

  • 6

    scallions, white parts coarsely chopped, green parts thinly sliced on a bias, reserved separately

  • 1

    1-inch piece fresh ginger, cut into 4 pieces and smashed

  • 2

    large garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

  • Kosher salt

  • 4

    cups water

  • ¼

    cup dry sherry (optional)

  • 2

    tablespoons chili oil

  • 2

    tablespoons tahini

  • tablespoons white sugar

  • tablespoons toasted sesame oil

  • 1

    tablespoon soy sauce

  • 2
  • 1

    teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns (optional), toasted and finely ground

  • ⅛-¼

    teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1

    large English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise on a bias

  • cup dry-roasted peanuts, chopped

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Sichuan Chicken Salad

Get Ready to Cook

4

Servings

1 hour 20 minutes

20 minutes active

Tip

Don’t boil the chicken for long; the meat will dry out. Residual heat gently poaches the chicken, guaranteeing it stays moist and tender.

Ingredients
  • 2

    10-12-ounce bone-in, skin-on split chicken breasts

  • 6

    scallions, white parts coarsely chopped, green parts thinly sliced on a bias, reserved separately

  • 1

    1-inch piece fresh ginger, cut into 4 pieces and smashed

  • 2

    large garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

  • Kosher salt

  • 4

    cups water

  • ¼

    cup dry sherry (optional)

  • 2

    tablespoons chili oil

  • 2

    tablespoons tahini

  • tablespoons white sugar

  • tablespoons toasted sesame oil

  • 1

    tablespoon soy sauce

  • 2
  • 1

    teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns (optional), toasted and finely ground

  • ⅛-¼

    teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1

    large English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise on a bias

  • cup dry-roasted peanuts, chopped

Step 1 of 3

Boil the chicken

2
10-12-ounce bone-in, skin-on split chicken breasts
6
scallions (white parts only)
1
1-inch piece fresh ginger, cut into 4 pieces and smashed
2
large garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
3
teaspoons Kosher salt
4
cups water
¼
cup dry sherry (optional)

In a large saucepan, place the chicken skin side down, then add the scallion whites, ginger, garlic and 1½ teaspoons of salt. Add the water and sherry, if using, fully submerging the chicken.


Bring to a boil over medium-high, then cover, turn off the heat and let sit until the chicken registers 160ºF, 15 to 20 minutes. Uncover the pan and let the chicken cool in the liquid for 30 to 45 minutes.

Step 2 of 3

Make the dressing

2
tablespoons chili oil
2
tablespoons tahini
tablespoons white sugar
tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1
tablespoon soy sauce
2
tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1
teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns (optional), toasted and finely ground
⅛-¼
teaspoon cayenne pepper

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the chili oil, tahini, sugar, sesame oil, soy sauce, vinegar, 1½ teaspoons of salt, Sichuan peppercorns, if using, and cayenne.

Step 3 of 3

Remove the chicken, shred, dress, and serve

1
large English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise on a bias
cup dry-roasted peanuts, chopped
6
scallions (greens only)

Remove the chicken from the cooking liquid. Remove and discard the skin and bones, then transfer the meat to a large bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of the dressing, then use a wooden spoon to smash the meat, working the dressing into it and shredding it.


Use your fingers to pull the shreds into bite-size pieces. Add the cucumber and three-quarters each of the peanuts and scallion greens. Drizzle with the remaining dressing and toss until evenly coated.


Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with the remaining peanuts and scallions.

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Sichuan Chicken Salad

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