Bang Bang chicken noodle salad

Bang bang chicken noodle salad.
Bang bang chicken noodle salad. Photo: Rob Banks

This is lighter and more of a salad version of the famous Sichuan dish of chicken in a spicy peanut sauce, this time served with lightly pickled vegetables tossed with bean thread noodles and mint.


4 chicken breasts

1 thumb of ginger, sliced

Half a cucumber, cut into matchsticks

2 celery stalks, cut into matchsticks

1 carrot, cut into matchsticks

2 tbsp rice vinegar

1 tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

100g bean thread noodles

1 tsp sesame seeds

For the sauce

2 tbsp peanut butter

1 tsp sesame oil

3 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp rice vinegar

2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

1 tsp sugar 

2 tbsp peanut oil

1 to 2 tbsp water


Place the chicken in a saucepan, add the ginger and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, then simmer gently for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave to steep for another 20 minutes.

Toss the cucumber, celery and carrot with the rice vinegar, sugar and salt and set aside for an hour or two. Pour boiling water over the noodles, leave for 4 minutes, then drain.

To make the sauce, combine the peanut butter, sesame oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, sweet chilli sauce, sugar and peanut oil in a bowl, whisking well until the sugar dissolves. Add a dash of water to lighten to pouring consistency.

Drain the chicken and finely slice across the grain, discarding skin (strain the stock for future use). Toss the noodles with the lightly pickled vegetables then divide between four plates. Arrange the chicken on top and spoon the peanut sauce on and around. Scatter with sesame seeds and serve with chopsticks.