During the warmer months, it’s nice to enjoy cold noodle salads (of course, they can also be served at room temperature if you don’t like them cold from the fridge!). The noodles, whether soba or vermicelli (rice), make for a filling, satisfying meal, and the addition of different veggies, meats and nuts provide a variety of flavors and textures. These salads are perfect as a meal or can be served as a side dish. They are especially nice during the BBQ and picnic season, too. Try one this weekend for your Mother’s Day celebration!
Emeril’s Cold Noodle Salad
(Recipe courtesy of Food Network)
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 4 teaspoons sesame oil
- 1 pound soba noodles, cooked until tender and refreshed in ice water
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions, cut on the bias
- 1/2 cup bean sprouts
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced carrots
- 1/2 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded, and thinly sliced
- 1 cup lightly crushed toasted cashews
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 tablespoons black sesame seeds
In a small bowl, whisk together honey, soy sauce and sesame oil. To the noodles, add green onions, bean sprouts, carrots, cucumber, cashews, cilantro, sesame seeds, and the soy mixture and mix thoroughly.
Dang Cold Asian Noodle Salad
(Recipe courtesy of Food Network / Guy Fieri)
- 1 package soba noodles
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon hot chili oil
- 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
- 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 carrot, thinly sliced or julienned
- 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced or julienned
- 5 green onions, bottom 4 inches, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced napa cabbage
- 1/2 red bell pepper, thinly sliced or julienned
- 1/2 cup julienned bok choy
- 1 cup bean sprouts, optional
- 3 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro leaves
- 3 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted, for garnish
- 4 tablespoons unsalted peanuts, for garnish
In a medium stock pot, boil water, add salt and cook noodles. When finished, place noodles in an ice water bath to cool. Drain and set aside.
In a medium bowl combine, sesame oil, vinegar, soy sauce, hot chili oil, hoisin and extra-virgin olive oil. Mix thoroughly and then combine prepared vegetables and noodles.
Garnish with sesame seeds and peanuts.
Cold Soba Noodle Salad with Chicken, Peppers & Cucumber
(Recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart)
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 8 ounces soba (Japanese buckwheat noodles)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, such as safflower
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus lime wedges, for serving
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 bell peppers (ribs and seeds removed), thinly sliced
- 1 cup torn fresh basil leaves
- 1 English cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and thinly sliced
- 1 rotisserie chicken, skin and bones removed, meat shredded (about 4 cups)
- In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook noodles until al dente; drain, and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together oils, lime juice, and vinegar; season dressing with salt and pepper to taste.
- Add bell peppers, basil, cucumber, chicken, and noodles to bowl; toss with dressing. Serve noodle salad with lime wedges.
Joyce’s Drunken Noodle Salad
(Recipe courtesy of TheKitchn.com)
For the Salad:
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 medium cucumber, julienned
2-3 medium carrots, julienned
2 hearts romaine lettuce, shredded
2 tomatoes, cut into wedges
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 to 1 cup of fresh chopped basil (Thai basil is preferred, but sweet basil works fine too)
2 bundles vermicelli rice noodles, about 8-10 oz.
2 T cooking oil
1.5 lbs chicken breast, cut into small pieces
lime wedges, for garnish
For the Sauce:
3 T fish sauce*
3 T black soy sauce*
3 T golden mountain sauce*
3 T rice vinegar* (white vinegar will work too)
2 tsp sriracha* (adjust to taste, depending on how much heat you like)
3 T fresh lime juice
1 T sugar
(*These ingredients should be available at your local Asian grocery store… and worth the purchase if you like cooking Asian-style dishes!)
Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, cut up and prep all the veggies (a mandoline will make julienning go much quicker, but if you don’t have one and want to save time on cutting, any bite size pieces or slices will do!). After cutting the veggies, prep the chicken and cut into small pieces (the smaller or thinner the pieces, the quicker they’ll cook).
Combine all of the dressing ingredients and mix until the sugar dissolves, then set aside.
When the water is boiling, add the noodles and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Drain the noodles in a colander and rinse with cold water until completely cool, then drain again and set aside.
Heat the oil in a large pan or wok over medium-high heat. Add the chopped garlic and chicken and saute for about 5 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and lightly browned.
Add all of the sauce and the chopped basil and cook until the sauce is warm and the basil has wilted, about a minute, then turn off the heat.
To serve, place chopped romaine lettuce at the bottom of a bowl, followed by a handful of rice noodles. Add chicken and sauce. (Or, reserve all the sauce in a separate dressing bottle, giving guests the option to use as much or as little as they please, like dressing on a salad.) Top with the tomatoes and julienned vegetables, and garnish with a lime wedge.
Cold Noodles with Barbequed Shrimp
(Recipe courtesy of NY Times)
- 1 pound medium-size shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 fresh hot chili, minced
- 1 teaspoon Vietnamese fish sauce
- 1 pound rice noodles
- Salt to taste
- Peanut dipping sauce (see recipe below)
- 4 scallions, minced
1. Preheat a charcoal grill.
2. Place the shrimp, peanut oil, lime juice, garlic, chili and fish sauce in a bowl, toss and marinate for 30 minutes. Remove shrimp from marinade and grill over charcoal about 7 minutes. Cool. Slice the shrimp in half lengthwise and set aside.
3. Boil the noodles in well-salted water to cover until tender, about 5 minutes, depending on size. Drain and cool under cold water and drain again. Place the noodles, shrimp, peanut sauce and minced scallions in a large bowl and toss. Chill in the refrigerator for one hour before serving.
Vietnamese Dipping Sauce:
- 1 cup peanut oil
- 1/2 cup fresh peanuts
- 2 fresh green chili peppers
- 2 tablespoons fresh minced ginger
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1/3 cup coconut milk
- 2 teaspoons dark soy sauce
- 4 teaspoons Vietnamese fish sauce
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup minced fresh coriander
1. Warm 3 tablespoons of the peanut oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet until nearly smoking. Add the peanuts and stir. Remove from the heat and continue stirring until the peanuts are toasted and then allow to cool.
2. Place the peanuts in a food processor and puree to a rough paste. Add the chili peppers, ginger, garlic, coconut milk, soy and fish sauces, sugar, lime juice and salt. Puree until almost smooth. Place the peanut mixture into a bowl and, with a wooden spoon, stir in the remaining peanut oil until the sauce has a nice sheen. Stir in the minced coriander. Use the sauce as a dip for grilled meat, or as a sauce for cold noodle salad.