A lovely simple spring salad with chicken, fresh asparagus and an Asian inspired soy sesame dressing!
Rotisserie chicken, fresh asparagus and salad greens are tossed in a sesame soy dressing and topped with toasted sesame seeds! The perfect spring salad!
While asparagus is available year round, there is something extra special about fresh spring asparagus. As soon as I see local asparagus, I start dreaming of our Asparagus Risotto and I'll be making a jar of Pickled Asparagus.
You probably don't need any convincing, but this 7 Health Benefits of Asparagus taught me a few things about asparagus that I didn't know!
I have been making this lovely chicken salad for years, but only now am getting around to posting it! I found this in a salad cookbook from Patricia Wells (I'll link to it in the recipe card.)
- Asparagus spears - try to find thin spears.
- Rice vinegar, soy sauce and sesame oil.
- Green onions - or spring onions.
- Salad greens - Asian greens are perfect, but you can use a baby spring mix.
- Cooked chicken - or turkey. If you have any extra chicken, be sure and look at my collection of Rotisserie Chicken Recipes.
- Sesame seeds.
Step by step instructions.
You start by blanching the asparagus. This cooks the asparagus until it's crisp tender and it also helps preserve the fresh green color.
Begin by filling a bowl with ice and then adding cold water. You want to create an ice water bath for the asparagus.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add salt. While the water is coming to a boil, trim off the tough ends of the asparagus. An easy way is to hold it with one hand at the center and the other at the stalk end and snap it. It will bend and break at just the right place!
Add the asparagus to the boiling water and blanch for 2-3 minutes. Immediately remove the asparagus using tongs and submerge them in the ice water bath. Let them cool for a minute or 2 and then remove them with the tongs and place them on a kitchen towel and wrap them to dry them off.
Make the dressing by combining the vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil and onions in a small jar and shake to blend.
Shred the chicken if you haven't already.
Then you are going to individually dress each component. Place the lettuce greens in a bowl and use just enough dressing to moisten it. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed. Place the lettuce on the plates.
Toss the chicken with enough dressing to moisten, taste and adjust seasoning and place it on top of the lettuce.
Toss the asparagus with the dressing, taste and adjust seasoning and rest it on top of the chicken.
Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.
This salad is light and fresh and so delicious! The sesame oil gives it a nutty flavor as do the toasted sesame seeds on top.
Dressing each component of the salad individually allows you to taste each one and season as you like. Plus it allows you to plate the salad, it's so pretty and we do eat with our eyes.
I love this served with some crusty bread and a glass of white wine.
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Sesame Chicken Salad with Asparagus
- 12 asparagus spears thin, trimmed
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 4 green onions thinly sliced
- 4 cups lettuce mixed Asian greens if possible
- 3 ½ cups chicken breasts cooked, shredded
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds toasted
- Prepare an ice water bath by combining ice and water in a large bowl.
- Heat a large pot of water to a boil and add salt. When boiling drop in the asparagus and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove with tongs and plunge in ice water. Let cool for about a minute and then remove asparagus and dry by wrapping in kitchen towel.
- Combine the vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil and onions in a jar and shake to blend.
- Place the lettuce green in a large bowl, pour over about ⅓ of the dressing and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings. Place the dressed lettuce on four plates.
- Add the shredded cooked chicken to the bowl, toss with about ⅓ of the dressing and taste and adjust seasonings. Divide between the four plates and place on top of the lettuce.
- Add the asparagus to the bowl and gently toss with the remaining dressing. Taste and adjust seasonings and divide among the plates.
- Top with the toasted sesame seeds.