Monday, September 2, 2013

Asian Cucumber Noodle Salad

I have a new favorite summer salad, and lucky for you, I love to share recipes! :)

This Asian Cucumber Noodle Salad is fun and a bit different than the usual summer salads you see at BBQ's and potlucks. It is cool and refreshing on a hot day, and it has a tangy fresh bite to it. It's loaded with lots of fresh veggies that are crisp and, if you are lucky, are ripe and ready to eat from your garden right now: red peppers, cucumbers, green onions and lots and lots of crisp romaine lettuce.

Without a doubt, this fresh and tangy salad won't disappoint! I've made it satisfying main dish a few times by adding grilled chicken to it, but mostly just whip it up without the meat and enjoyed it that way as a main dish or a great side salad to bring to your next get-together. 


Asian Noodle Salad
adapted from Eating Well magazine 
Click here to print

8 oz. Chinese egg noodles or spaghetti noodles
1 c. creamy natural peanut butter
¾ c. rice vinegar
2 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil (or olive oil)
1 c. thinly sliced green onions
¼ c. chopped fresh cilantro (opt.)
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. Asian chile sauce such as sambal, Sriracha or sweet
2 heads baby romaine
2 grilled chicken breasts, sliced into 1/4- inch slices and chilled (opt.)
2 medium red bell peppers, diced
1 large English cucumber, peeled, seeded, halved lengthwise and diced
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Few dashes cayenne (opt.)
Toasted sesame seeds for garnish (opt.)

  1. Fill a large bowl with water and add ice cubes. Cook noodles in boiling water until just tender. Drain and transfer to the ice water. When the noodles are cold, drain well and transfer to a very large bowl. Set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk peanut butter, vinegar, sesame oil, soy sauce and chile sauce until smooth. Add scallions, cilantro (if using) and stir to blend.
  3. Cut the baby romaine heads in half lengthwise and then crosswise into ½-inch pieces.
  4. Add the lettuce, chicken (if using), bell peppers, and cucumbers to the noodles. Add three-fourths of the dressing and toss to coat. Season with salt, pepper, cayenne if desired. Add the remaining dressing if desired.
  5. Transfer the salad to a serving bowl; garnish if desired.

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