Vietnamese Shredded Chicken Salad

Vietnamese Entree

(Gơi Gà)


2 chicken breasts
¾ teaspoon salt


½ red onion
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
⅔ head Napa cabbage or ½ head green cabbage
1 large carrot
½ cup fresh cilantro
½ cup fresh mint
2 green onions
⅓ cup roasted peanuts
¼ teaspoon black pepper


2 garlic cloves
3 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoons chili garlic sauce or sriracha
2 tablespoons fish sauce or soy sauce
2 tablespoons sugar



Serves 6. Takes 1 hour.


Add chicken and salt to pot. Add enough water to cover chicken. Bring to boil using medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low-medium. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and tender to the fork. Remove chicken and shred with two forks.


While chicken simmers, use mandoline or knife to cut red onion into slices ¼” thick. Add red-onion slices and rice wine vinegar to large mixing bowl. Mix with fork until well blended. Let sit for 15 minutes.

While chicken simmers and sliced red onion sits, shred Napa cabbage. Julienne carrot. Dice cilantro, mint, and green onion. Add shredded chicken and all remaining salad ingredients to mixing bowl with red onion..


Mince garlic cloves. Add all dressing ingredients to small mixing bowl. Mix with whisk or fork until well blended.

Add dressing ingredients to bowl with chicken and salad. Toss salad and dressing with two forks until well blended.


1) Shredded Chicken Salad uses shredded chicken.

2) You can tell my synapses are really firing today.

3) Shredding is also a surfing term. It means to surf a wave in a flamboyant and adept manner.

4) Shredding and shredding means to shred a wave then shred chicken for a meal or eat shredded chicken for a meal. The following conversation illustrates the two meanings of shredding.

Surfer 1: “Whoa dude, you really shredded the gnarly waves out there.”
Surfer 2: “Thanks man, primo waves. Primo waves.”
Surfer 1: “Ya hungry for Ho Chi’s chicken shack?”
Surfer 2: “Cowabunga dude, he really shreds the chicken.”

5) Wouldn’t The Two Meanings of Shredding be a great title for a book on Eastern philosophy?

6) Potato chip is a derisive term for a ridiculously small surf board.

7) Note that a small surf board is relative to the size of a surf. What is a potato chip for a 6′ 7″ man would be an okay board for a petite woman.

8) Surf boards for chicken are never called potato chips.

9) Because chickens are so small to start with.

10) Most chickens never master the art of surfing. Turkeys never do. Roosters could shred the waves if they would only concentrate. But after every successful maneuver, they’ll crow to the heavens, lose sight of the waves, and wipeout. And let me tell you, there’s nothing surlier than a rooster that’s bailed.

11) However, a small number hens can really surf. If you’re lucky you can see hens shooting the curls at your local beach. But if you want to be guaranteed world-class hens shredding the waves, you really must attend the Hilo Chicken Surfing Invitational every May. Be sure to book right away. Tickets and rooms disappear months in advance.


– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on

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