I can’t wait to travel to Asia. I’ve never been, but considering my love for Asian flavors and cuisine how could I not fall instantly in love with it? I don’t think I would miss Western food for a second. I’d trade rice noodles for pasta any day. The flavors of lemongrass, fish sauce, soy sauce, curry paste, ginger, lime, chili peppers..hmm… I could go on and on. These flavors just awaken my taste buds and bring the dish to life. I love savory food because it’s so three dimensional – it can be sour, sweet, spicy, smooth, tangy all at the same time (as opposed to sweets which are always just sweet) and I find these contradicting combinations very common in Asian cuisine.
And so I knew when I found this recipe that it would be a hit. I’ve made summer rolls before and absolutely love them so a deconstructed summer roll salad is definitely up my alley. Only problem with this recipe is all the chopping and julienning required. It’s worth it though – trust me. And best of all this meal doesn’t leave you with that heavy stuffed feeling that you get from pasta with alfredo sauce and meaty burgers – you leave the table feeling light and fulfilled.
Recipe Adapted From Running With Tweezers
- 8 oz bean thread noodles (or rice vermicelli noodles)
- 2 shallots, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- ½ shrimp, shelled and deveined
- 1 medium cucumber, julienned
- 1-2 carrots, peeled and julienned
- 1 cup mung bean sprouts
- ⅓ cup roasted peanuts, crushed into smallish pieces
- ⅓ cup basil, sliced
- ⅓ cup cilantro, sliced
- ⅓ cup mint, sliced
- 2 small red chilies, minced
- 2 tablespoons ginger, grated
- 2 tablespoons honey
- ¾ cup fish sauce (a couple tablespoons less if too strong for you)
- ⅔ cup rice vinegar
- lime wedges
- In a pot bring water to a boil and add noodles. Cook 3-5 minutes making sure not to overcook. Drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
- In a pan heat coconut oil over medium-high heat and add shallots. Cook until shallots are starting to get golden brown. Remove and drain on a paper towel. Add shrimp to pan and cook until cooked through 3-4 minutes.
- To make the dressing: in a bowl whisk the fish sauce, rice vinegar, ginger, red chili pepper, and honey.
- To assemble the salad: in a large bowl add cucumber, carrot, bean sprouts and noodles, toss to combine. Add all herbs, shallots and peanuts, and top with shrimp. Squeeze lime wedges over the salad. Pour the dressing over the salad when ready to eat, otherwise noodles will get soggy. Serve with additional lime wedges.