Chicken, Rice and Peach Salad

This recipe is from the cookbook Rick Stein Secret France, from which I’ve cooked before when I made his lentil and duck confit salad last fall. I really like this British chef’s love of French food, although he’s a true gourmand and loves many different cuisines.

I was really taken with this salad because of the beautiful range of ingredients, from peppery to sweet, spicy and so forth. I couldn’t resist those roasted peaches. For fun, I drizzled the finished salad with Mike’s hot honey, and added cayenne pepper flakes. But that’s just me!

I also decided to use a zingy vinegar. It was perfect with this salad, along with some good olive oil.

The salad came out really well. It was light and flavorful. I wish I’d found some mangetout or something similar, but the green beans worked just fine.

Salad of Poached Chicken, Red Rice and Peaches

2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 banana shallots, finely chopped
1 teaspoon piment d’Espelette
10 ounces Camargue red rice
1 teaspoon salt
Handful flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
2 large rice peaches, or nectarines, halved
1 tablespoon runny honey (I used agave)
4 thin slices Bayonne ham (I used prosciutto)
5 ounces mangetout, blanched and refreshed (I used green beans)
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
4 – 6 tablespoons classic vinaigrette
Salt and black pepper

Bring 24 ounces of water to a simmer in a wide pan. Add the chicken breasts and poach them for 10-12 minutes. Remove them and set them aside to oval, then slice on the diagonal. Reserve the liquid for cooking the rice. (I used chicken broth.)

In a large pan with a lid, heat the oil, add the shallot and piment d’Espelette and cook until softened. Add the rice, 22 ounces of the hot chicken poaching liquid and a teaspoon of salt, then cover with the lid and turn the heat down to a simmer. Cook for about 30 minutes until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Leave the rice to stand with a lid on the pan for a further 10-15 minutes. Stir in most of the chopped parsley.

I completely skipped over this part accidentally, but I added the piment d’Espelette to the rice and the sliced chicken, and sprinkled the salad with the chopped shallots.

Meanwhile, put the fruit on a piece of foil and drizzle it with the honey. Season the fruit with a little black pepper and grill it under a medium heat for 6-8 minutes until it’s tender and brown around the edges. Set the fruit aside with its honey juices. Turn up the grill and grill the ham slices until crisp.

Spoon the rice on to a large platter and scatter over the green beans (or mangetout) and grilled fruit.

Add the sliced chicken, crisped ham, toasted pine nuts, and remaining parsley, then drizzle the vinaigrette all over.

Serve immediately.

I used arugula as the base layer for the salad, slightly wilted from some dressing. I wanted more greenery in the salad, and it worked very well.

Two comments – The prosciutto or Bayonne ham didn’t require frying, and honestly some rotisserie chicken would work really well!



About the Author: Chef Mimi

As a self-taught home cook, with many years in the culinary profession, I am passionate about all things food-related. Especially eating!


  1. angiesrecipes August 18, 2023 at 6:08 AM - Reply

    The salad looks bomb! My husband would devour it. That hot honey sounds really interesting.

    • Chef Mimi August 18, 2023 at 7:02 AM - Reply

      I made my own hot hone from a recipe when I made whipped feta. And it was really good, but Mike’s is a very easy substitute!

  2. BERNADETTE August 18, 2023 at 6:48 AM - Reply

    You made good use of beautiful summer products to create this wonderful summer evening dinner.

    • Chef Mimi August 18, 2023 at 7:01 AM - Reply

      It was such a wonderful salad with all of the flavors and textures!

  3. Sherry August 18, 2023 at 6:54 AM - Reply

    Lots of great flavours here Mimi. Sounds very refreshing and delicious. I’ve not seen camargue rice here but I guess you can use another type. Rick Stein is well loved here as his wife is an Aussie and he has a restaurant here.

    • Chef Mimi August 18, 2023 at 7:00 AM - Reply

      I guess he’s been around a long time! I’m just relatively new to him and his cookbooks. We did go to a restaurant in Cornwall that was chef-owned by a protégé of his. It was excellent.

  4. Travel Gourmet August 18, 2023 at 7:02 AM - Reply

    This is gorgeous – from one of my favourite books, although I haven’t tried this yet. Now I know I must!

  5. Dorothy's New Vintage Kitchen August 18, 2023 at 7:32 AM - Reply

    This looks really lovely! I like your spicy drizzle.

    • Chef Mimi August 18, 2023 at 8:52 AM - Reply

      It was all so good!

  6. ajeanneinthekitchen August 18, 2023 at 9:19 AM - Reply

    What a deliciously beautiful salad. YUM!

    • Chef Mimi August 18, 2023 at 5:39 PM - Reply

      It was excellent!

  7. petra08 August 18, 2023 at 12:03 PM - Reply

    The salad sounds as delicious as it looks! I was just thinking about chicken salad this week and now I will add peaches for sure, what a treat! :)

    • Chef Mimi August 18, 2023 at 5:40 PM - Reply

      It was really good. I’d keep it easy and use grilled or rotisserie chicken!

  8. Tandy | Lavender and Lime August 19, 2023 at 12:11 AM - Reply

    Do you follow Moya from Food and Tools on Instagram? She had a monthly challenge and this month is red rice. Something I’ve never tried a we don’t get it here. The honey you used looks interesting as well.

    • Chef Mimi August 19, 2023 at 11:23 AM - Reply

      Interesting! I’ll have to check her out! The honey is fantastic and fun to use. I followed a recipe for hot honey when I posted the whipped feta recipe. Even better!

  9. David Scott Allen August 19, 2023 at 12:40 PM - Reply

    I haven’t had many rice salads, and I don’t know why! This looks absolutely delightful, and so fresh!

    • Chef Mimi August 19, 2023 at 1:56 PM - Reply

      It doesn’t have to be rice, of course. I love barley in salads, and of course orzo works well. But these flavors are fantastic.

  10. Thao @ In Good Flavor August 19, 2023 at 4:44 PM - Reply

    Yum! I love hearty salads and this one is so nutritious to boot! The peach is such a fantastic addition. I was looking forward to fresh local peaches this summer, but the local farmers lost their peach crop due to early frost this year.

    • Chef Mimi August 20, 2023 at 7:33 AM - Reply

      Oh no! That’s so sad. There’s nothing quite like peach season.

  11. Healthy World Cuisine August 19, 2023 at 10:18 PM - Reply

    Love this! It is the perfect change of season salad. Light from the peaches but hearty with the red rice. Simply delicious and a beautiful click too.

    • Chef Mimi August 20, 2023 at 7:34 AM - Reply

      Thanks! I really loved it. I’ve had a great salad with peaches and octopus that I should try to recreate, but this one was also really good and a little more involved.

  12. Jeff the Chef August 20, 2023 at 10:10 AM - Reply

    I love ways to use rotisserie chickens, so thanks for that tidbit. Anything with peaches like this always seems so refined to me! Nice!

    • Chef Mimi August 23, 2023 at 4:48 PM - Reply

      Maybe refined, but also there’s a rusticity to this salad as well. Make it!!!

  13. Ann Coleman August 20, 2023 at 1:33 PM - Reply

    My goodness, does that look good! I’d reduce the heat a little so my husband could share it, but I bet it would still be delicious!

  14. Debra August 20, 2023 at 2:27 PM - Reply

    Once again, the tastes here are so on point for what I’m craving these days. I’m thinking it couldn’t be any more perfect, Mimi!

  15. Ronit Penso August 20, 2023 at 4:58 PM - Reply

    Great flavors and colors in this salad. Love the roasted peaches.
    The one thing I would probably change, is poaching the chicken in water only. But maybe that’s just me. :)

    • Chef Mimi August 20, 2023 at 6:24 PM - Reply

      No, it’s not only you! I went through with the poaching, but I used chicken broth!

      • Ronit Penso August 20, 2023 at 6:39 PM

        Great minds etc…. Chicken broth makes so much more sense! :)

      • Chef Mimi August 21, 2023 at 7:58 AM

        It does. Plus it was better to cook the rice in. But grilled or rotisserie chicken would have been better in my opinion.

  16. Valentina August 21, 2023 at 8:23 PM - Reply

    Amazing salad. It’s stunning, and the flavor combination is absolutely dreamy. I can’t get my hands on enough peaches right now. I buy at least a dozen at the Farmers’ Market every Sunday and by Wed. they’re gone. Funny, just today I almost grabbed a jar of Hot Honey I saw at Trader Joe’s. (I love it with Burrata!)

    • Chef Mimi August 22, 2023 at 7:20 AM - Reply

      Hot honey really is a fun product. I made some from scratch when I made the whipped feta recipe, and it was especially good, but Mike’s is great in a pinch!

  17. David @ Spiced August 22, 2023 at 7:06 AM - Reply

    I thought I spotted some prosciutto hiding in there! I love the sweet + savory combination of flavors in this recipe, Mimi. We’ve got the grill going almost every night during the summer, and this sounds like a recipe I need to try. Funny enough…I’m heading out to the farmer’s market today to find fresh peaches!

    • Chef Mimi August 22, 2023 at 7:21 AM - Reply

      Speaking of grilling, I think I’d much prefer grilled chicken on this salad. It would not interfere with the other flavors.Poached really does nothing for me!

  18. carrietalkingmeals August 24, 2023 at 5:36 AM - Reply

    Loving the sweet and savory combination in this salad!

    • Chef Mimi August 24, 2023 at 8:33 AM - Reply

      It works so well! I need to use peaches more often!

  19. Raymund August 30, 2023 at 10:39 PM - Reply

    This sounds absolutely delightful and packed with a wonderful variety of flavors and textures. So much happening on a plate but in a nice way.

    • Chef Mimi August 31, 2023 at 1:29 PM - Reply

      Chicken and peaches really do well together!

  20. terrie gura August 31, 2023 at 8:08 AM - Reply

    OMG with the hot honey on this! That was a nice move, Mimi!

    • Chef Mimi August 31, 2023 at 1:31 PM - Reply

      Thanks, Terrie! I always love to go the spicy route if I can…

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