Grilled Mushroom, Chicken and Papaya Salad

By Renate Engelbrecht

Wednesday, Feb 01

Eating more sustainably has become quite a big trend over the past couple of years. While I am definitely not vegetarian or vegan, I also sometimes feel like having a meat-free (often substituted with a mushroom or three) meal since meat can often be overpowering and quite heavy – especially over lunchtime.

Hence, here is a lovely (and rather creative) recipe with mushrooms and papaya that will leave you light and satisfied. SAMFA (The South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association) is a brand I’ve been working for for more than two years now and their recipes always inspire. This one will too.


Grilled Mushroom, Chicken and Papaya Salad

Serves 4


400g portabello mushrooms, sliced thickly

2 small chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
1 small cucumber, thinly sliced
½ cup fresh coriander leaves
½ cup fresh mint leaves
1 small papaya, peeled, seeded and sliced
4 Tbsp roasted peanuts, salted, chopped
1 small red chili, sliced


1-2 red chilies (depending on how hot you like it), finely chopped
1 small garlic clove, finely grated
1 tsp fresh ginger, finely grated
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp brown sugar or palm sugar
Zest and juice of 2 limes
2 Tbsp olive oil

Olive oil, for cooking
Salt and pepper, to taste

SAMFA Mushroom Chicken and Papaya Salad
SAMFA Mushroom Chicken and Papaya Salad. Image: Supplied


For the salad dressing

In a small bowl, combine all the dressing ingredients.
Whisk to mix well.
Taste to adjust seasoning and set aside.

For the mushroom-inspired salad

Heat a large griddle pan on high heat.
Toss the mushrooms with a drizzle of olive oil and then place on the griddle pan.
Press them down with a metal spatula to get nice grill marks.
Cook until just tender and retain some bite.

In a large serving bowl combine the chicken, cucumber, coriander, mint and papaya.
Add the grilled mushrooms.
Drizzle everything with a little dressing and toss gently to combine.
Scatter with the roasted peanuts and sliced chili.

Serve with extra dressing on the side and enjoy!


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