Thai-Style Chicken Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing

This comes from Cook’s Illustrated, May and June 2006. The premise is to make chicken salads with creative vinaigrettes instead of mayo. I made this version with a slight change and have ideas for a few variations. There are two other variations in the magazine, each with a different twist, that sound equally delicious

The recipe called for 5 cups of shredded roast chicken. I poached a chicken breast the Chinese way instead by covering it with cold water, bringing it to a boil, turning off the heat, covering it, and letting it sit for about 20 minutes. I wish I had also thrown in the some of the beautiful red bell pepper we had in the frig.

A vegetarian version of this using tofu instead of chicken would also be very tasty with the tofu soaking up the piquant flavors of the dressing.

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Israeli Cucumber Salad

In order to use up our bumper crop of cucumbers this year, I scouted out many versions of cucumber salad. This was one of the best. It is from Renee Shepherd and Fran Raboff’s book, Recipes From a Kitchen Garden, that is a boon to gardener’s with too much stuff. The onions and chives came from the garden too, and the lemon came from our neighbor’s tree. The radishes would have come from the garden too if the birds hadn’t eaten all of them first. This went particularly well with Baked Beans with Nigerian Seasonings.

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