This is more evidence that in Burmese cooking, everything can be turned into a salad. The best chicken to use here is leftover cooked chicken - simply pull the leftovers into pieces. Fried chicken or rotisserie chicken is great for this salad. If you need to cook chicken for this salad, poaching it is the easiest way to go. For 1 large chicken breast or 2 to 3 chicken thighs, put the chicken in a small pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, season the water with a few generous pinches of salt, and then lower the pot to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pot, and let the chicken steep for 30 minutes. The chicken will finish cooking as it rests.
Serves 2; 4 as part of a larger meal
½ yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 lime, halved
3 tablespoons canola oil
About 2 cups cooked chicken (about 2 rotisserie chicken breasts or 1 large chicken breast, poached), at room temperature
1 cup shredded cabbage and/or romaine lettuce
½ cup thinly sliced cucumber
2 tablespoons seeded and minced jalapeno
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro
1 ½ tablespoons toasted chickpea flour (see page 215)
1 teaspoon fish sauce
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Fried Garlic Chips (page 211), crushed (optional)
A put a quarter of the sliced onion in a small bowl. Squeeze half a lime on top and mix to coat.
In a wok or skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the remaining quarter of a sliced onion, lower the heat to medium, and cook, stirring often, until the onion has evenly browned and turned crips, about 10 minutes.
Pour the onion and the frying oil into a large mixing bowl. Once the oil has cooled to room temperature, top with the chicken, cabbage, cucumbers, jalapeno, cilantro, and chickpea flour. Add the fish sauce, salt, and reserved raw onion with the lime juice. Using your hands, mix well. Taste, adding more fish sauce, more lime juice, or a pinch of salt if needed. Transfer to a salad bowl and sprinkle fried garlic on top.