Chopped salad is the new cupcake. In DC, where I work sometimes, chopped salad shops like Chopt and Sweet Greens are the new hot lunch places. They are even catching up to the cupcake shop trend. Then last week Subway invited me to “make any sub a chopped salad!” So, I figure it is officially catching on. But, honestly, who can resist a salad you can eat with a spoon! The magic is in the combinations. To your greens choices (far beyond our old standby lettuce) add something creamy, crunchy and sweet. Now you’ve got a salad. I made this recipe to use our napa cabbage and bok choy. You could also make other combinations with these greens and the sesame dressing, like avocado, radish and fried wontons. Add a protein like baked chicken breast and you have a meal.
For the dressing:
3 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons real maple syrup
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 clove of garlic, finely minced
For the salad:
2 heads of Napa cabbage
1 baby bok choy
1 3-ounce package ramen noodles and seasoning
¼ cup butter
1 cup dried chopped apricots and cranberries
1 15.5-ounce can chick peas, drained and rinsed
In a bowl whisk the sesame oil, vinegar, maple syrup, soy sauce and minced garlic.
Prepare the cabbage and bok choy, slice the stalk and the leaves both thinly and then chop in the other direction so you have bite-sized pieces.
Crush the ramen noodles in a bag with a rolling pin. Brown them in butter in a skillet over medium heat. Stir constantly to avoid burning – it will only take 2 to 3 minutes. Add the seasoning packet and stir to combine.
Place everything in a large serving bowl – greens, crunchy ramen noodles, dried fruit, chick peas and dressing; toss well to coat.