Seattle chef-restaurateurs (and siblings) Eric and Sophie Banh like to poach the chicken for this vibrant Vietnamese salad, then toss everything with a homemade scallion oil. To save time, use store-bought rotisserie chicken and skip the scallion oil; the salad gets plenty of flavor from the spicy, vinegary dressing and abundance of fresh herbs.
Notes from the Food & Wine Test Kitchen
One thing not to skip, however, is making the salad’s fried shallot topping. It’s not at all difficult, but may be a bit different from what you’re used to for salad prep. Trust us, the flavor and texture imparted by the golden, crispy shallots is part of what makes this salad so special. The recipe calls for two large shallots, thinly sliced. If you have a mandoline, this would be a good time to use it; the more uniform the slices, the more evenly the shallots will cook. Once they’re fried to perfection (keep a close eye, this happens fast!), use a fine mesh strainer or slotted spoon to remove the shallots from the oil. After it’s cooled, be sure to save the onion-tinged oil for another use.
Frequently asked questions
What is Gỏi Gá?
Gỏi Gá simply means “chicken salad” in Vietnamese — and it’s one of the country’s most popular salads. Served cold, it’s made with shredded chicken and cabbage, along with fresh herbs, carrots, and onion. The tangy dressing is tempered with a bit of fish sauce and sugar. It’s a great warm-weather meal, especially if you’re using a rotisserie chicken.
How much chicken do I need?
This recipe calls for three cups of shredded chicken, which is about half of a rotisserie bird. If you have neutral-flavored leftover chicken on hand, you can certainly use that, or poach chicken specifically for this dish like Eric and Sophie Banh do.