This is one of my absolute favorite meals. I request it every time I go home, because I don't have a deep fryer to fry the won ton skins. We even had it at our reception, and it was a hit. I was talking to my mom awhile ago about maybe having this when we were home for Kenny's homecoming, and she told me they've tried something new with the salad: instead of getting out the deep fryer and frying up the won ton skins (a big task in it of itself), she's replaced the won tons with crispy chow mein noodles and won ton skin salad toppers. I was a bit hesitant at first, but we had it in CA and I was convinced it was delicious, a decent replacement, and that I could make the salad myself now!
So yesterday I decided to go for it, and it was pretty much perfect, and just what I wanted. The only problem is, I ate two huge bowls, and probably could've gone for a third. It is so yummy and easy to eat. And it's even delicious the next day (some family members argue it's the best the next day, I prefer it the first day, because I love the crispy won tons, but I will eat it any way possible).
The following recipe is what is in our family cookbook. This easily makes 8 bowls' worth, and was plenty for us (and leftovers, yay!). So there are 'measurements' for some of the ingredients, but you can add or subtract amounts of most anything for this. I toned down the almonds, because I tried toasting them on the stove and ended up burning the majority of them. And I really like the mandarin oranges, so I might add some more next time. Anyways, this salad is the best and I will eat it all summer long!
~2 c. cooked chicken (I probably used 12 - 16 oz, didn't measure, just did it)
1 head lettuce (or romaine, or a mix of iceberg, romaine, green leaf)
4 green onions
1/2 c. - 1 c. crispy chow mein noodles (eyeball it)
1 small bag won ton skins salad toppers (found near croutons and salad ingredients in Safeway)
4 Tbl. slivered almonds (can be toasted for optional/optimum flavor)
2 Tbl. sesame seeds (same goes)
1 can mandarin oranges
1. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces, cook and set aside.
2. Tear/cut lettuce, slice green onions and toss.
3. Add rest of ingredients, dressing and toss.
4. It's often best when it's chilled a little, so if you can resist, chill salad at least 20 minutes before serving.
Dressing (mix all ingredients, make ahead of time and chill well)
2 Tbl. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1/4 c. oil
1/2 - 1 tsp. accent seasoning (optional)
1/4 tsp. black pepper
3 Tbl. unseasoned rice vinegar