Eating brown and orange food became repetitive after a while and I turned to this Asian noodle salad to liven things up. I make this when I crave something vibrant and fresh: the colours alone cheer me up and the kick of chili; intense fresh ginger and fragrant herbs make me feel healthier instantly.
I don’t make any claim to its authenticity: it’s a mash-up of the eastern flavours I enjoy and uses what’s readily available in an average supermarket.
I often eat it with quickly sautéed chicken, or thinly sliced beefsteak. It would be immense with roast pork belly. This time I ate it with grilled squid but quite frankly, it’s great on its own and you can remove the noodles for a virtuous low carb, low calorie feast tasting of better weather to come.
Asian Noodle Salad – Serves 4 with other things, 3 on its own.
· Small bunch/handful coriander, torn roughly
· Small bunch basil/handful, torn roughly
· Small bunch mint/handful, torn roughly
· Half a cucumber, de-seeded (scrape out the juicy middle bit with teaspoon or melon baller) and thinly sliced into 5mm batons
· 3 small carrots (or 2 big ones) finely sliced into strips
· ¼ small red cabbage finely sliced into strips
· 3-4 spring onions finely sliced diagonally
· 2-3 medium red chilis finely sliced. Leave out the seeds if you can’t hack it.
· 2 nests of dried fine egg noodles, boiled for 3 minutes then rinsed with cold water under the tap to cool. *Or fine rice vermicelli noodles cooked to packet instructions and left to cool.
For the dressing:
· 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
· 1 tablespoon fish sauce
· 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
· 2 tablespoons light soy
· Juice of half a lemon
· 2 inch chunk of ginger peeled and grated with a fine grater
· 2 cloves of crushed garlic
· 1 teaspoon caster sugar
1) Mix the dressing ingredients in a large bowl
2) Prepare the noodles.
3) Chop up all the salad bits or use a mandolin if you're fancy.
4) Toss the salad bits together with the dressing in the large bowl and taste – it may need a splash more light soy for seasoning.
5) Eat with protein of your choice or on its tod.