Winter has been like a crazy roller coaster ride in Ohio this year. One day we're outdoors without coats, only to be bundled up in layers and boots a few days later. In the kitchen, it's much of the same pattern. Steamy bowls of soup, stew, and other hearty fare are replaced days later with light main course salads. But warm or cold, this Vietnamese salad is always at the top of my list. It's a no guilt meal full of robust flavor, and is gluten free. You can substitute the shrimp for leftover chicken (shred it) and add whatever vegetables you may have on hand. If you'd like to make this ahead of time, keep the dressing and ingredients separate until you are ready to serve.
Vietnamese Shrimp Salad with Rice Noodles
Makes 1 cup dressing
- 2 cloves garlic
- 4 T. rice vinegar
- 8 T. fish sauce
- 6 T. fresh lime juice from 2 limes
- 2 serrano peppers (less if you don't like heat)
- 3 T. brown sugar
- 3 T. salad oil
Pour all ingredients into a food processor and process until well combined. Set aside.
- 6- 8 cups napa cabbage, thinly sliced (from 1/2 medium napa cabbage)
- 3 cups romaine lettuce, thinly sliced
- 4 carrots, peeled and grated (use a cuisinart ,mandolin, or grater)
- 6 oz. rice noodles (Pad Thai or linguine size)
- 8 oz. shrimp, cooked and cut into large pieces
- handful of cilantro and mint
- 1 cup scallions, slliced
Place rice noodles in a large heat proof bowl. Pour boiling water over noodles to cover and allow to steep for 6 minutes until softened but not mushy. Drain, refresh with cold water, and toss with 3 T. dressing. Set aside.
Toss all ingredients together in a large serving bowl. Add dressing and serve immediately.
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