I have been pairing seafood with poultry now for about 40 years, inspired by a wealth
of fabulous Chinese and Thai recipes. This is a great warm-weather salad – the textures play well together and the sweetness of the mango finishes it off deliciously. Replace the prawns with lobster if you want to spoil your friends, or leave the noodles out if you’re watching your carbs. I love this dressing – the fruitiness of the tamarind works in just about any salad.
King prawn, chicken and mango salad.Credit:William Meppem. Styling by Hannah Meppem
8 cooked king prawns, peeled and deveined
2 large chicken breasts, skin off
120g fresh fine egg noodles,cooked
40g fresh black wood fungus
40g fresh white wood fungus
40g enoki mushrooms
1 ripe mango, peeled and cut into 4 slices
freshly ground white pepper
For the pickled cucumber
1 continental cucumber
1 tsp sea salt
60ml rice wine vinegar
30ml caster sugar
For the dressing
4 heaped tbsp palm sugar
4 tbsp tamarind juice
2 tbsp light soy sauce
120ml extra virgin olive oil
1. To make the pickled cucumber, slice the cucumber lengthwise on a mandolin, or slice very thinly. Add sea salt and allow to stand for 30 minutes. Wash the cucumber in cold water and dry with a paper towel. In a small bowl, mix the vinegar and sugar together and add to the cucumber. Set aside until ready to use.
2. To poach the chicken, bring a litre of water to the boil and season heavily with sea salt before immersing the chicken breasts. Reduce heat to a bare simmer for 12 minutes and remove from the heat. Allow the chicken to steep for a further 18 minutes before removing from the water.
3. To make the dressing, mix the palm sugar with 20ml water in a small pot and cook until the sugar has caramelised. Add the tamarind juice and soy sauce and allow to cool to room temperature. Add the olive oil and stir vigorously.
4. In a large bowl, mix the cooked and cooled egg noodles with black and white fungi
(you can find them in most Chinese grocers) and enoki mushrooms. Add half the dressing and toss to coat.
5. Divide the salad between 4 large plates. Place a slice of mango on each plate, top with
a 1cm slice of chicken and the pre-cooked prawns. Top with a slice of pickled cucumber and grind over some pepper. Drizzle over the remaining dressing, and serve.
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