In re: General Tso’s Salad?

A search of the internet for “General Tso’s Salad”, “General Tso Salad”, and “General Tsos Salad” turned up nothing and I didn’t feel like wading thought the 8 billion results if i took the quote marks out.  So anyway, I can’t be sure, but it seems like this isn’t something people are doing.  Why not?

I’ll begin with the fact I love General Tso’s chicken (see Wikipedia entry for the unknown origins, the various names and links to articles on the subject), the quasi-Chinese dish that is probably one of the more unhealthy things you can think of (lots of fried chicken pieces).  Most restaurants also do you the favor of giving you an obscene amount of chicken and two or three pieces of broccoli to make yourself feel better about yourself and the fact you ate a well rounded meal of protein (fried), starch (plain white rice) and vegetable (1 floret of broccoli).   Needless to say I try and avoid General Tso’s like the plague, but every now and then I succumb to its siren like calling.

Attempting to satisfy my love for the dish I have tried making homemade versions that skip the deep frying, up the veggie and swap in brown rice.  The results can actually be quite good, but no one would ever confused the grilled General Tso’s with the fried version.

Fast forward even further, to yesterday when dinner time approached and I was reheating the leftover Pho from lunch from Lac Viet Market in the North Market, which has to be one of the best deals for food in Columbus, where for $5 you get some pretty good Pho that is easily two meals and comes with all the garnishes (bean sprouts, basil, lime, hot sauce, cilantro) to make it a truly great meal.  (I also love there Banh mi ga (sometimes known as a Vietnamese sandwich which consists of french bread sub with shredded barbecue chicken, mayonnaise, cucumber, carrots, radish and that maggi sauce).  Well back to the dinner time, I was making a salad to go with my soup and it had dawned on me, not for the first time, to make a General Tso’s salad dressing, using the Trader Joe’s General Tso sauce as a base I added rice wine vinegar to thin it out and some olive oil and a bit of lime juice, but really as you can tell, I didn’t do much, put it on some lettuce and was amazed, it was pretty good, well I thought it was more then pretty good, but I am not sure if that is just because I love that General so much.  It got me thinking why if we turn every other dish into a salad (often a tasty and unhealthy one – think taco salad w/ sour cream, cheese etc.) why hasn’t there been a salad with General Tso’s chicken?  You could toss some of the crunchy fried wantons (we are trying to stay healthy right?) some green onions, tomatoes, etc and I for one would be all over it.  I will investigate the subject further and let you know how it goes, maybe it was just what I was in the mood for last night, or maybe the Generals secret sauce belongs on lettuce as well as fried chicken.


One Response

  1. This isn’t a dead on match, but it is pretty tasty, too:

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