A few extra chillies would give this salad a lot more punch. This Thai recipe transforms the familiar leftovers into a thoroughly Asian salad perfect for hot days.
Finely shred 1/2 a Chinese cabbage. Grate two carrots. Cut 1 capsicum into thin strips. Shred 300 g cooked chicken meat and finely slice 100 g ham.
Make a dressing by combining:
1 birdseye chilli, finely chopped 2 cloves of garlic crushed 2 tablespoons lime (or lemon), juice 2 tablespoons dark soya sauce 1/2 cup of flaked almonds, lightly toasted
Bring a large pot of water to the boil and have ready a sink full of icey-cold water. Plunge the shredded cabbage into the boiling water for one minute then scoop it out and into the cold water.
Drain and dry the cabbage and arrange it and the other vegetables in sections or concentric rings for maximum decorative value on a large serving dish. Fill the centre of the arrangement with chicken and ham.
Decorate the dish with bright red chilli "flowers" (optional). Pass the dressing separately.
From "Raw Materials" by Meryl Constance, Sydney Morning Herald, 12/22/92.
[The chilli "flowers" can be easily made by slitting long, thin, hot chillies lengthwise from near where the stem attaches and then tossing the slit chillies into a bowl of ice water and ice cubes.
The "petals" will curl back and make an attractive garnish. Make about eight slits. S.C.]