Hello, darlings! Today I’m excited to introduce another blog friend of mine, Whitney from That Square Plate. I love her approachable style of cooking, and if you haven’t checked out her blog yet, the New Orleans BBQ Shrimp are really good. Today she’s sharing a crunchy Asian salad that sounds perfect for warmer weather! Enjoy…
Hey y’all (yes I’m a southerner), I’m Whitney and I’m the most southern part of Alabama — like where there are beautiful white sandy beaches. I blog over at That Square Plate and love to share a variety of recipes that feature fresh ingredients. I also am a fan of seafood, breakfast food, and smaller dishes. I appreciate Mary letting me step over here and share an awesome Asian-inspired salad recipe with you guys.
After being super indulgent this week with some Fried Green Tomato Sliders and a Spicy 4-Cheese Crab Pasta, I had to take a step back and realize I can’t just eat like this all the time. I’m a salad-for-lunch eater during the work-week, so I like to prep them on Sundays, and bring them throughout the week for a light, flavorful lunch.
For this crunchy Asian salad, I made the dressing ahead of time and added it to a jar, so I could shake it up when it is ready to eat. All you need to do is whisk all of the ingredients together, finishing by drizzling in the olive oil while continuously whisking so it all emulsifies.
For the salad, I used Romaine lettuce, two types of cabbage, carrots and some green onions for the veggies, then I added in some peanuts and rice sticks for crunch.
This salad was pretty easy to put together, and I discovered a new ingredient I hadn’t worked with before!
See those crispy white things on top of the salad?? I’m sure many of you have seen them in Asian dishes, and I’m sure a lot of you have worked with them in the past, but to me.. they’re new. I used to be a super-picky eater when I was growing up, so a LOT of food is pretty new-to-me.. but I love buying random groceries at the store and trying to incorporate them into fun recipes. These are Maifun rice noodles… and they are awesome. They’d been sitting in my pantry for months just waiting to be used.
I would have never known what to do with them, but the package instructions gave me two options: soften them in hot water… or FRY THEM UP. And being the southern girl that I am, I decided to toss ‘em in the fryer — just to see what they’d do, and because my mind wouldn’t have told me to do that in the first place. So, I heated up some oil, and tossed about ¼ of the package in the fryer. Literally in seconds, they puffed up into what you see on the top of the salad, and turned out to be a super crunchy, light topping! When I took them out of the fryer and tasted them, I realized the crunch was AMAZING, but they needed a little extra flavor… so I sprinkled them with a little bit of sugar to give them a subtle sweetness that I needed for the salad. I hope you guys enjoy!
- 2 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon tamari or soy sauce
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
- 1/4 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- ¼ teaspoon hoisin sauce
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 12 oz Romaine hearts, sliced
- 1 c . red cabbage, thinly sliced
- ½ c . green cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1 c . carrots, julienned
- ½ c . peanuts, toasted
- 3 green onions, chopped
- 1/4 oz pkg. Rice Sticks, about 2-3 .
- Canola oil, for frying
- 1 tablespoon sugar
For the dressing:
- Whisk rice vinegar, tamari, garlic, sugar, ginger, sesame oil, and hoisin together. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil while continuously whisking to emulsify. Set aside or in refrigerator until ready to use.
For the salad:
- In a large bowl, toss Romaine, cabbages, carrots and green onions together.
- For the rice sticks, heat a few inches of canola oil in a frying pan to 375 degrees F(or use a deep fryer). Once the oil is heated, toss in a small handful of the rice noodles, and when they puff up (about 20 seconds), remove onto paper towels and sprinkle with sugar.
- Add a serving of salad mix to your plate and toss with your Asian dressing. Add toasted peanuts and top with the crispy rice noodles. Enjoy!