Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Vaguely Asian Cabbage Salad

This salad is based on one I once ate at a (I think) Vietnamese restaurant. I liked it enough I went home and tried to replicate it. Even though I changed every single ingredient, I think I came close to the spirit of it. I forget what the other ingredients were, other then that the noodles were probably sweet potato starch rather than mung bean starch, and the parsley was cilantro. If you want to revert to either of those ingredients you should certainly feel free. However, this is the combo that works for me.

I made a pork roast this week, and I rather think the leftovers of this salad and the pork will end up in Vietnamese spring rolls

4 servings
20 minutes prep time, plus about 1 hour resting time.

Make the Salad:
1 bundle (50 grams, 2 ounces) bean thread noodles
1 large carrot
2 cups finely shredded cabbage
2 small stalks of celery
1/2 cup finely chopped parsley

Put about 4 cups water on to boil. When it boils, turn it off and add the bean thread noodles. Cover them and let them soak for 5 minutes. Drain them, rinse them thoroughly in cold water, then drain them well again. Roughly chop them, or snip them with scissors, and put them in  your salad bowl.

Meanwhile, peel and grate the carrot. Clean and trim the cabbage and celery, and chop them finely, along with the parsley. Add them to the noodles. 

Make the Dressing:
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup rice or white vinegar
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup chopped peanuts

Mix the sugar, vinegar and water, and stir until the sugar is dissolved. I usually ladle out the water from the hot noodle-soaking water, so as to speed the dissolution of the sugar. Toss the salad with the dressing. It should be made sufficiently in advance to marinate a bit in the dressing - 20 minutes will do in a pinch but an hour is better, and the finished salad will keep very nicely in the fridge for several days. I often make a double recipe so as to have salad for the next few days.

Serve the salad garnished with the chopped peanuts.

Last year at this time I made Baked Chiles Rellenos and Corn & Edamame Salad. I'm thinking things are further along this year...

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