Matteo Ricci's Lite Empress Chicken Noodle Salad
I found this to be wonderfully simple, delightfully tasty, and healthy. It took me about 20 minutes to put it all together plus the dishes are easy to clean up. Leftovers make a great lunch snack too. (Serves 6)
2 chicken breast halves
1/2 pound uncooked vermicelli, broken into halves
1 medium-size red bell pepper, julienned (I used a green pepper)
1/2 cup chopped green onions and tops
1/3 cup rice vinegar (I used red wine vinegar)
3 tablespoons soy sauce (low sodium preferred)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root (I used ground ginger from a jar)
1-1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
Anthony's Optional Ingredients
2 handfulls of Oyster mushrooms
1 tablespoon butter
1 package of Spinach leaves/salad
1/2 cup chopped peanuts
A little fresh ground black pepper
I sliced up the chicken breasts into long thin pieces and then simmered chicken in 2 cups water (I added some teriaki sauce and would probably use a zinfindel wine instead of water next time to give the chicken a little flavor) until no longer pink on the inside. Drain chicken and set aside to cool.
Optionally, rinse out the container you used to cook the chicken. Add butter and allow to melt. Add 1/2 cup of water and oyster mushrooms. Allow mushrooms to cook until soft. Add mushrooms to the chicken and set aside to cool.
Cook vermicelli according to package directions, drain, and rinse in cold water - let drain thoroughly.
Chop up the pepper and the onion and combine with chicken (and mushrooms) and vermicelli.
In a separate container stir together vinegar, soy sauce, vegetable oil, sugar, ginger, sesame oil and white pepper until sugar dissolves. Pour over vermicelli mixture and toss to coat all ingredients well.
Cover and refrigerate 1 hour. Toss well before serving.
I served it over spinach leaves with some chopped peanuts. Additionally you may consider topping it with a little fresh squeezed lime juice and fresh ground black pepper.
Matteo Ricci, was one of the first priests to enter China and bring Christianity to the Chinese. He became highly respected as an intellectual and his writings are still considered some of the best in Chinese history. For more information on Matteo Ricci you may wish to read Vincent Cronin's The Wise Man From the West.