Thursday, August 16, 2012

Asian Chicken Salad

Since we became a one-income family, we are trying to stay on a really tight budget.  My job is to stretch our food dollars as far as they can go.  If I can do this efficiently it means an extra date night for us.  I'm not willing to compromise on food quality and luckily we can afford not to.  But that doesn't mean I'm not looking for ways to save. 

One of the main things I'm trying to do is cut down on waste.  I feel like a lot of food gets thrown away in our house on a daily basis.  Part of that is just a fact of life with two kids.  Food is often left on their plates or on the floor.  But there is also waste that I'm responsible for: the chicken carcass that goes in the garbage, carrot pulp from juicing, almond pulp from milk and lots of broccoli and cauliflower stalks.

We love our cruciferous veggies here and end up with plenty of leftover stalks. I'm guilty of throwing them away in haste.  Who wants a barren stalk lurking in their refrigerator?  So now I'm on a mission to cut down on this waste... dare I say eliminate it?  Not only is this an economic choice but also an environmental one.  It's important to me to respect the Earth and everything we are so blessed to have.  Not being wasteful with our food is part of this respect.  This is so important to me to pass on to our kids.

With that thought in mind I made not one, but two, batches of broth from the carcass of our roast chicken.  No need for store bought here.  I’ve been freezing my almond pulp so I can dehydrate it into flour when I have a large batch.  I’ve been putting my carrot pulp in these muffins. And I've been saving my broccoli stalks.

I'm pretty sure Andy thought I had gone off the deep end today.  He asked me if I wanted to save the leftover broccoli stalk and I was perhaps a little too zealous with my "YES!" in reply.  Luckily my husband takes these things in stride.  He wasn't complaining at dinner time.

Asian Chicken Salad

Macadamia Nut Dressing
1 cup Macadamia Nuts
2 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup olive oil
1/8 Red bell pepper (optional)
2 tbsp Lime
1 tsp ginger
Dash red pepper

1/2 cup Cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup Green onion, julienne
1 cup shredded Carrot
1 cup shredded broccoli (from stalk)
1/2 cup Green pepper, sliced thin
1 1/2 cups chicken, shredded or chopped
Sliced almonds to garnish

Combine all dressing ingredients except for oil in blender.
Blend on high until smooth.
Reduce speed to low and slowly add oil.

Combine salad ingredients and dressing and mix well.
Scoop 1/4 to 1/2 of mixture into food processor and pulse until chunky, just a few seconds.
Combine again, mix well and serve.

This is perfect over a bed of greens or in lettuce cups.

Not bad for leftover scraps huh?

This post is shared at Whole Foods WednesdayReal Foods WednesdayAllergy Free WednesdayTasteful TuesdaysKeep It Real ThursdaysPennywise Platter Thursday and Simple Lives Thursday


  1. Love salad no matter what kind :) I could easily change out chicken for chick peas to make it veg :) Awesome recipe! :) My name is Cindy and I blog over at I wanted to invite you to link up your recipe at our Gluten Free Fridays Recipe Link up party! It happens every Friday and we'd love to have you join us with some of your awesome recipes! You can find this week's link up here:
    Thanks, Cindy

    1. Thans Cindy! I love veggie salads too and this would be just a good without the chicken. I like to sub beans or soaked sunflower seeds in my salads. I'll definitely check out your blog :)

  2. Gosh, I think the stalk is the best part. Just peel off the tough outer skin. It's much better than the tops!

    1. I love the stalk and tops equally :) thanks for stopping by!

  3. I love the macadamia dressing in this...and lettuce wraps are a weakness of mine! I am featuring your recipe on Allergy free Wednesday this week!

    1. Awesome Tessa! Thanks so much for checking my blog out :)

  4. Homemade Asian Chicken Salad-yes, I'll take seconds please! I love your macadamia dressing. Thank you for sharing with us on Allergy-Free Wednesdays!

  5. I saw your link on Allergy Free Wednesdays and I had to check it out. I love you macadamia nut dressing. So clever! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Love the post. Broccoli stalks can be juiced also and they make a great asian salad with white balsamic, almonds, carrots and little garlic salt.

    1. Thanks Leslie, I am a huge fan of juicing but have never tried the stalks. I'll have to do that with my next batch!