Thai Chicken & Runner Bean salad

I bloody love salads. Any salad. Husband, however, is slightly more selective and enjoys a hearty Chicken Caesar or Tuna Nicoise. Son is way more picky. He studiously avoids the healthy bits these days, gently pushing the green leaves and vegetables to one side of his plate. So I knew I would have to a) give him something more substantial than salad leaves and b) would have to chop it all up so he couldn’t be able to pick bits out! This recipe did the trick. The Thai flavours really give it a bit of zing, the coconut dressing was full of pazzazz and it was very filling (and – ssssh, don’t tell my Son – very healthy too!).

IMG_2119Thai Chicken & Runner Bean Salad

Ingredients (serves 3 – 4)

200g fine green beans

1 red chilli, halved and finely sliced

2 shallots, finely sliced

1 lemongrass, finely sliced

2cm piece ginger, chopped

Half a red pepper, thinly sliced

2 skinless chicken breasts

Large bunch mint leaves

Large bunch Thai basil or coriander

Thai rice

Coconut dressing:

150ml tinned coconut milk

1 garlic clove, crushed

3 tbsp fish sauce

2 tsp sugar

Juice 1 lime

How to prepare

1. Poach the chicken breasts. The simplest way is to use this method.

2. Steam the beans for 3-4 mins or until tender but still bright green, douse with cold water and drain. Then put into a bowl with the shallots, red pepper, lemongrass, chilli and ginger.

3. Steam/boil some Thai rice – as much or as little as you would like to serve. I used 75g per person which was ample.

4. Slice the chicken breasts and add to the bowl.

5. To make the dressing, blend the coconut with the fish sauce, garlic, sugar and lime. Tear the mint and Thai basil (or coriander) over the chicken and toss to combine. Put a portion of rice onto each plate, then top with the chicken/bean salad. Pour over the dressing and serve.