Sesame Ginger Noodle Salad

Sesame Ginger Noodle Salad

Sunday Morning Hazards
Sometimes my mouth gets me in trouble. Sometimes I agree to things without thinking. Sometimes it’s worth it.

Last Sunday morning, we were couch-surfing after a tasty French toast breakfast and the Pioneer Woman was on the TV (because the Food Network is always my daughter’s first choice unless any of the Harry Potter movies are on). I wasn’t really paying attention but I had a vague idea that it was on in the background. Our plans that day revolved around a woodwork project for the back patio so I was trying to figure out my plan of attack. It was then that I heard my husband announce to the room” I want that for dinner!” and I stopped everything that I was doing to take a look.

It is rare that a member of my family tells me exactly what they want to eat without any prompting from me. Usually, there is a lot of back and forth about what sounds good? What do we have in the fridge? Etc..So when someone says I want that, it’s kind of a big deal. I said yes without hesitation. I was already planning on going to the store anyway so no biggie…right?

This, of course, was all before I spent the next 6 hours crouched down staining two by fours in the sun. When we finished our project and it was time for dinner I was less enthusiastic about our dinner plans and promises I made. Thankfully the recipe came together easily and went well with the pork chops I threw on the grill. Even better it made enough to cover lunch the next day. (This recipe actually makes a lot. It would be perfect for a potluck…when we can do that again!) In fact, it was even better the next day.

I wasn’t better the next day. I was walking like the tin man….

Sesame Ginger Noodle Salad
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman on the Food Network
Yields 6 servings

For the salad
16 ounces soba noodles, rice noodles or spaghetti
1-1/2 cups julienne/fine-cut carrots
1 cup baby sweet peppers, seeded and thinly sliced
1 large English cucumber, halved, seeds removed and sliced
3 green onions, sliced
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped plus several leaves for garnish
1/2 head or more Napa cabbage, sliced
1/2 head or more purple cabbage, sliced
2 cups peanuts, chopped
Sesame seeds for garnish

For the dressing
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup oyster sauce
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
2 tablespoons sesame oil
3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced

Make the noodles
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Cook the noodles to al dente according to the directions on the package. Drain and rinse the noodles, and allow them to cool to room temperature.

Assemble the salad
Mix together the cooked noodles, carrots, peppers, cucumbers, scallions, cilantro (reserve a few whole leaves for garnish), Napa cabbage, and purple cabbage. Add the peanuts and toss them together.

Make the dressing
Whisk together the olive oil, soy sauce, oyster sauce, rice wine vinegar, brown sugar, ginger, sesame oil, and garlic in a medium bowl.

Assemble the salad
Pour half of the dressing over the salad and mix thoroughly with tongs or your hands. If the salad still seems dry, add more of the dressing to taste.

Garnish with a sprinkle of sesame seeds and cilantro leaves.


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