Saigon chicken and cabbage salad

OH DUDES, I saw this in the latest Australian Gourmet Traveller and had to break my magazine embargo and buy it, just to make it. Well, this and the coconut cake on the front cover which looks divine*.

I made it – I even made the dressing the way it says, with mortar and pestle (rather than bunging it all in the food processor) and OH.MY.GOODNESS. Eleanorfromthecommentbox and I had scoffed two bowls of it before we even got to the official eating location of the back verandah. It was a fitting dish for feeding her family (or parts thereof) too.

So, as we stare down the barrel to some horrendously hot weather, this is the total solution. For those of you in snow, well, just make it regardless.

Saigon chicken and cabbage salad

Australian Gourmet Traveller, January 2011

  • 500g chicken breasts (original recipe uses chicken thighs)
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 long red chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp finely grated ginger
  • 1/2 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/4 each white and red cabbage, thinly sliced on a mandolin
  • 3 carrots, julienned
  • 1/4 cup (firmly packed) each mint, coriander, Thai basil and Vietnamese mint
  • 1 bunch chives, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup roast peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • 12 canned quail eggs (I didn’t use these-canned eggs? Skeevy)

Chilli and lime dressing

  • 5 long red chillies, coarsely chopped
  • 3 coriander roots, scraped
  • 1 golden shallot, finely chopped
  • 1/2 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 ripe Roma tomato, coarsely chopped
  • 50g caster sugar
  • Juice of 2 limes, or to taste
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce, or to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C
  2. Combine the chicken with the honey, chilli, ginger and garlic in a baking dish. Season to taste and cover with foil and roast until chicken is cooked (about 12-15 minutes). Remove foil and cool to room temperature, then coarsely shred the chicken and set aside.
  3. For the dressing, pound the chilli, coriander root, shallot and garlic in a mortar and pestle then add the tomato and pound to combine.
  4. Add 25ml water and remaining ingredients, adjust seasoning to taste and set aside. The dressing should be sweet, salty, hot and sour.
  5. Combine the cabbage, carrot and herbs in a bowl, add chicken, drizzle over a little dressing and toss to combine. Add more dressing to taste, scatter with peanuts (and quail eggs if you wish) and serve.

So good. So very very good.

* But get this, the whole section on coconut has you MAKING your own coconut milk or cream by buying FREAKING coconuts. I mean, COME ON.

Jamie Oliver bocconcini marscapone and chilli salad

Jamie Oliver’s bocconcini, marscapone and chilli salad

  • bocconcini
  • marscapone
  • lemons – zest and juice
  • long red chillies – seeded and sliced finely into long thin strips
  • marjoram
  1. Rip the bocconcini into pieces
  2. Mix enough lemon juice through the marscapone to your preferred taste and season with some sea salt and freshly cracked pepper.
  3. Smear dollops of the marscapone over the bocconcini
  4. Scatter lemon rind, chilli and marjoram leaves over the top
  5. Serve with crusty bread and eat until your head falls off.


This weekend TOTALLY rocked. I had t.h.e. best weekend.

  1. Soccer was cancelled because of the rain – wooobloodyhoo!
  • We had a birthday brunch for my BIL – it was just great to hang with family and catch up.
  • Because of the weather, the Fox was quiet so Chef surprised us and arrived – and was home for the day.
  • We washed the dogs and had them inside for most of the day – and went to the petshop and bought a dog kennel that Chef now has to build and paint. Mwhahahaha. Expect to see photos of it here, when it’s finished, in probably 2008.
  • The Doyles came over for dinner – dinner being a loose term for catching up after they’d been back to the States for a month. None of us felt like eating that much, but we all sure felt like drinking.
    – So, I made up a few nibbles type dishes, Jen brought over the weirdest dip ever that – not unsurprisingly – tasted better as the night progressed.
    – The kids picked over it and ate leftover linguine and we just hung out.
    – So, seven bottles of wine later they all stayed the night.
    – Yep, them and their three kids. Hilarious.
    – It ended up with Me, Chef and our bigger boys in our bed, their youngest in Oscar’s, Jen in Felix’s, Oscar initially in the spare bed in Jasper’s room, their middle on a mattress in Jasper’s room, their eldest and Bri on the lounges.
    – There were a few bed changes throughout the night, but just like last weekend – I had my favourite thing – a house full of people for breakfast on a Sunday.
    – So, I cooked up bacon, eggs, toast, pancakes, coffee and more coffee and we all just hung out.
  • Then today, I just mooched around with the kids. I did vacuum, but that was really it. No cleaning, no running around, just hung out.
  • For dinner tonight, I made fajitas.