This Tandoori Chicken and Lentil Salad with Coconut-Ginger Dressing is always one of the most popular salads during the Cleanse & Reboot detox program. This low-fat salad combines spiced chicken, fresh herbs and veggie packed lentils and a creamy coconut dressing spiked with ginger and cilantro. Now that’s a salad…..
Start with a Great Spice Rub..
The spice rub in this recipe is my version of a tandoori blend. If you want to cut corners and buy a pre-made spice blend go for it, just don’t tell me. Alternatively, you can use commercial tandoori paste and marinate the chicken with yogurt as directed on the jar. The spice blend in this recipe is good and simple to prepare. Plus, you probably have all the spices hiding in your cupboard. You can use this spice blend to marinate the chicken with yogurt. Increase the amount to three tablespoons of spice blend with 1 cup of yogurt.
NOTE. The following recipe yields more spice blend than you need. Store the rest in an airtight container for the next time you make the salad ……..as there will be a next time!
Add a Healthy Lentil Salad…
The lentil salad in this recipe is good enough to hold it’s own. You can use it as a side or top it with grilled tofu, shrimp or grilled salmon. It sits nicely on it’s own on a buffet table or as a side dish to bring to your neighbor’s BBQ. Adding diced avocado keeps the salad vegetarian, while adding a textural contrast.
Please just keep in mind that red lentils cook really quickly and can easily turn to mush. Mushy lentils are great for a traditional Dahl or curry but not for a salad! Sooo…watch them carefully and DON’T OVERCOOK THE LENTILS! Cooking time varies on the size, brand etc. Just watch them as they can be ready in as little as 5 minutes.
And drizzle with Creamy Coconut and Cilantro Dressing…
This January has been about eating healthy and trying to lose a bit of the extra holiday weight we pack on in December. We have been reducing calories without eliminating dairy. That meant I could prepare the dressing this week with low-fat Greek yogurt. However, when dairy is not permitted (during the Cleanse & Reboot) I prepare the dressing with coconut milk. You can find that recipe here Creamy Coconut and Cilantro Dressing.
The Final Dish…Tandoori Chicken and Lentil Salad with Coconut-Ginger Dressing
…..Slightly spicy chicken with a crunchy, veggie packed lentil salad and a creamy, gingery, coconuty dressing. A low-fat salad good enough for dinner!
Et voilà! Bon Appétit and remember…if you like the recipe please share and let me know below!Print
Tandoori Chicken & Lentil Salad with Coconut Ginger Dressing
- Prep Time: 35
- Cook Time: 20
- Total Time: 55 minutes
- Category: Salads
- Cuisine: Indian
- Spice Rub:
- 3 Tablespoons paprika
- 1 Tablespoon Ground Coriander
- 1 Tablespoon Cumin
- 1 Tablespoon Salt
- 1/2 tablespoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1/2 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 4 chicken breasts
- 1 1/2 cups Red lentils (coral)
- 1 cup diced cucumber
- 1/2 cup grated carrot
- 1/2 cup grated or thinly sliced radishes
- 1/4 cup chopped mint
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (coriander)
- 1 Scallion (spring onions, thinly sliced)
- juice of 1 lime
- salt and pepper
- 5 cups mixed salad greens
- For Dressing:
- 1 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
- 2 handfuls fresh cilantro (coriander)
- 3 teaspoons soy sauce or tamari
- 4 teaspoons lime juice
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1 thumb size piece of ginger
- 2 Tablespoons shredded, dried (unsweetened) coconut
- Combine all of the spice rub ingredients together in a small bowl.
- Coat the chicken breasts in a glug of olive oil and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon spice rub. Alllow to marinate in the fridge for 1 hour.
- Rinse the lentils well in a colander. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Salt the water and add the lentils. You may need to skim the scum off the surface of the water as they cook (depending on how well you rinsed them.) Cook the lentils until tender but still firm and holding their shape. This takes about 5-10 minutes, depending on size and brand so check regularly. Drain the lentils and set aside to cool.
- Toss the lentils with the cucumber, carrot, radish, cilantro, mint and scallions.
- Place 1 tablespoon spice rub in a small frying pan and toast over medium heat, until fragrant. Remove from the heat and pour in the lime juice and then pour juice and spices over the lentils and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
- For the dressing: Combine the yogurt, cilantro (coriander), soy sauce, lime juice, garlic and ginger in a blender and purée. (If doing by hand chop the cilantro (coriander), garlic and ginger as finely as you can and then add to the other ingredients in a bowl and whisk. Stir in the dried coconut.
- For the chicken: Preheat a grill, bbq or broiler. If broiling (grilling in the UK) line a baking sheet with foil, place the chicken breasts on the baking sheet and place the baking sheet on the top oven rack, as close as possible to the grill/broiler. If using a bbq place the chicken breasts on the bbq over medium-high flames. Cook the chicken on both sides until done, about 6 minutes per side. Remove and allow to sit for a few minutes before slicing.
- Line 4 plates or a platter with some mixed greens. Top with lentil salad and chicken breasts. Drizzle some coconut dressing over the top and serve the rest on the side.
Keywords: Tandoori chicken, chicken salad, lentil salad, chicken and lentil salad, tandoori chicken and lentil salad