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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Glass Noodle Salad w/ Chicken


P1000584
This my first successful attempt at an Asian inspired meal since moving to Vietnam last September. It is mid May now and thankfully today was not as hot as it has been (mid to high 90’s already) so “no cook” meals have a definite appeal at the moment. I have adapted this recipe from Anne Taylor Pittman, Cooking Light, August 2010 to fit my needs and seasonal local ingredients available. See my notes on Additions and Substitutions at the end of the page, along with the definition for Sambal which I had to look it up and then still couldn’t find in the closest grocery store…my homemade version worked just fine! The original recipe (pictured below) yields 4 servings; mine however as you can see above is probably 6 main dish servings.  I do tend to live in the moment when I cook. It is easy for me to  get slightly carried away adding fresh veggies plus I threw in about 4 handfuls of noodles until it felt right. Dinner was super yummy and we have left overs for tomorrow…yea!
chicken-noodle-salad-ck-l
Ingredients:
  • 1 (3.75-ounce) package uncooked bean threads (cellophane noodles)
Dressing:
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sambal oelek (ground fresh chile paste) or chile paste with garlic
Salad:
  • 2 cups shredded skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast
  • 1/2 cup matchstick-cut or grated carrot
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper strips
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced shallots
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup chopped unsalted dry-roasted peanuts
Preparation
  • 1. Place noodles in a large bowl. Cover with very hot tap water, and let stand 10-15 minutes.
  • 2. While noodles soak, combine vinegar and next 4 ingredients (through sambal), stirring until sugar dissolves. Combine chicken and next 5 ingredients (through mint), tossing well.
  • 3. Drain and rinse noodles with cold water; drain well, squeezing to remove excess water. Snip noodles several times with kitchen shears. Combine noodles and chicken mixture, tossing well to combine. Drizzle noodle mixture with vinegar mixture; toss well to coat. Top with peanuts.
Additions:
  • Sliced Shitake/Baby Portabella Mushroom
  • 1 halved and sliced peeled cucumber 
  • Blanched fresh baby peas
  • 1/2 each julienned Yellow & Green Pepper
  • I added more fresh cilantro & mint
  • I made another batch of the dressing and added 4 T olive oil to serve on the side
  • Serve on side: Sliced Fresh Chili, Lime slices, Homemade Sambal
Substitutions:
  • Leek & Grn onion vs. shallots
  • Marinated Chicken breast cooked on stove top, since I cannot find rotisserie chicken locally. My marinade was threw together spur of the moment using similar ingredients to the dressing.
  • My own version of sambal: 3 small fresh chili, 3 cloves garlic, 3 shallots, 1/2 tsp chili sauce (Vietnamese), lime zest, 1T lime juice/pulp, 2 tsp. peanuts blend in food processer. Add 1 tsp. fresh cilantro & mint if on hand.

Sambal ulek (oelek)

Chili (bright red, thin and sharp tasting). Some types of this variant call for the addition of salt or lime into the red mixture. Oelek is a Dutch spelling which in modern Indonesian spelling has become simply ulek; both have the same pronunciation. Ulek is Indonesian special stoneware derived from common village basalt stone kitchenware still ubiquitous in kitchens, particularly in Java. The Ulukan is a pestle shaped like a hybrid of a dinner and soup-plate with an old, cured bamboo root mortar (ulek-ulek) employed in an ulek manner: a crushing and twisting motion (like using a screwdriver) for crushing lime leaves, chilies, peppers, shallots, peanuts, and other kinds of ingredients.

    These stats apply to the original version only:
  • Calories: 346 Fat: 11.7g
  • Saturated fat: 2g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 5.4g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 3.5g
  • Protein: 27.1g
  • Carbohydrate: 34.1g
  • Fiber: 2.4g
  • Cholesterol: 60mg
  • Iron: 2.1mg
  • Sodium: 589mg
  • Calcium: 44mg

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