Miso adds richness to chicken salad

The shortcut to a tastier salad doesn’t lie in those pre-mixed plastic bottles. Oil and vinegar work in a jiffy, but at Milk Street we’ve discovered a world of simple salad dressings that go beyond basic vinaigrette.

In Japan, flavorful miso forms the basis of many salad dressings, adding a richness of umami to non-dairy greens. Often, fermented soy paste is mixed with oil and lemon juice or rice vinegar for brightness, as well as ginger or garlic for added complexity.

For acid, we like the fruity aroma of lemonade, but we also like the sharpness of Dijon mustard and a bit of sweetness from a teaspoon of honey. Whip the sauce together in a blender, and you get the texture of almond pieces.

It’s delicious on simple mixed greens, but in the recipe from our book “Milk Street Tuesday Nights,” recipes are limited to 45 minutes or less, we use the dressing for an easy chicken salad made with shredded, store-bought rotisserie chicken. Sliced ​​cucumbers and a hefty dose of cilantro add freshness, and extra slices of almonds bring a fun crunch.

It can be made ahead of time and refrigerated for up to four days, but if you’re using it right away, be sure to wait after you mix it up. Allowing it to stand for at least 30 minutes allows the flavors to mingle.

The recipe takes 30 minutes to complete and serves four.

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Ingredients …

Half a cup of water

⅓ white miso cup

2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced

1 cup almonds, chopped, toasted, divided

Half a cup of lemon juice

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon honey

Kosher salt and ground white pepper

½ cup grapeseed or any other neutral oil

3 cups shredded cooked chicken (about 3 pounds of chicken)

6 medium green onions, thinly sliced ​​(½ cup)

cup finely chopped coriander leaves

English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced ​​(1 cup)

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directione …

In a blender, combine water, miso, ginger, ½ cup almonds, lemon juice, mustard, honey, ½ teaspoon white pepper. Blend until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the oil and mix until the sauce is thick, about 1 minute. Transfer to a jar, cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 days.

In a large bowl, combine chicken, green onion, cilantro, cucumber and remaining ½ cup almonds. Add 1 cup of the sauce and stir to combine. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve with the remaining sauce on the side.

For more recipes, go to Milk Street Christopher Kimball at 177milkstreet.com/ap

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