Last week I grilled up a nice piece of tuna for dinner. We had a green salad with it but I wanted something more. I knew we had rice noodles and so on the way home I came up with a fun recipe for a rice noodle salad. It plays off the flavors of my favorite Thai Spring Rolls, and while it might not be the most authentic (I didn’t have any fish sauce but adding some would probably help), it was awfully tasty!
Asian-Inspired Pasta Salad
- 1/2 package dry rice noodles (I actually wanted to use rice sticks but didn’t see them in the cupboard; these “chunky” ones work fine)
- 1 shredded carrot
- 1 rib shredded celery
- 1 small portobello mushroom, cut into very small strips
- 3 snap peas, cut into very small strips (you could also go with pea sprouts)
- (use your imagination for anything else that you might want to throw in!)
- 1 recipe sauce
- 3 tbsp chunky peanut butter (smooth would work fine, of course)
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (hubby said I could have used more but I was worried it would be too hot!)
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp granulated garlic
- 1 tsp shallot, cut very very small
- 2-3 tbsp pineapple or rice wine vinegar
In a small bowl, mix sauce together. Taste and add seasoning accordingly. I added a touch of olive oil because hubby’s peanut butter needs to be refrigerated and I didn’t have time to let it come to room temperature and I couldn’t mix it! But I don’t think that’s necessary for the overall dressing.
Bring water to a boil on the stove. Add rice noodles and cook for 2-3 minutes or until soft. Immediately drain and wash with cold water. Add shredded vegetables and sauce and stir. Serve garnished with sesame seeds and basil or mint (if you have holy basil, use that – it’ll be the most authentic!). Serves 4.
Although this is a vegetarian pasta salad as it stands, you could easily add cooked shrimp or chicken to it. We ate the leftovers with some pulled pork I made a while back and had stashed in the freezer. Totally yummy!