Saturday, May 26, 2012

Excellent Thai Peanut Noodle Salad

I made something like this a while back, and I liked it, but it wasn't as good as it could be. Since then, I've been on the look out for a better version. Finally, I found it, in the Whitewater Cooks with Friends cookbook. It's a lot of chopping but the results are worth it. Below is the recipe with my changes:

Excellent Thai Peanut Noodle Salad


1/2 cup peanut butter, smooth
1 lime, juice and zest of
2 tsp sesame oil
3 tbsp sweet chili sauce
4 tbsp rice vinegar
4 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
1 tbsp maple syrup
4 cloves garlic, halved
2 tbsp fresh ginger, chopped
1 tsp sambal chili paste, or more to taste (I usually use like 1 tbsp but I like things VERY spicy)
1-2 tbsp oil
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped

1/2 16-ounce (454 g) package pad thai rice noodles (rice stick)
1 kettle full of boiling water
1 tsp sesame oil
2 carrots, juilenned
1/2 long english cucumber (or any cucumber) seeded and julienned
1 red pepper, julienned
2 cups bean sprouts
1 bunch green onions, sliced thinly on the diagonal
1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds
2 tbsp sesame seeds


1) Blend all dressing ingredients except cilantro and oil with a hand blender or food processor
2) Add oil in and mix until incorporated
3) Stir in half the cilantro and set aside

4) Place rice noodles in a large bowl, cover with boiling water and soak for 10 minutes or until tender
5) Drain into colander, rinse with cold water, place back in bowl and toss with sesame oil
6) Add juilenned carrots, cucumbers, red pepper, bean sprouts and green onions to noodles and set aside.

7) Heat up a heavy-bottomed pan on the stove. Add almonds and sesame seeds and toast until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes -- keep an eye on these because they can burn easily!

8) Add approx. 3/4 of dressing to noddles and mix gently together with your hands, tongs, or two wooden spoons.
9) Garnish with remaining cilantro, toasted nuts, and, if you like, a drizzle of extra sauce or spicy chili paste.

If there's any sauce left over you can use it on steamed brocolli or on chicken or in various other delicious ways. Enjoy!

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