Thursday, April 19, 2012

Serving Up {Salad}: Chinese Cabbage Salad with Peanut Sauce

I have a tried and true Oriental Chicken Salad that I have been making for years and I am pretty sure that most of you have eaten a variation (or two) of it.  You know the recipe, the one with ramen noodles and cabbage....such a yummy salad!

When I saw this particular version of the salad, with napa cabbage, toasted ramen noodles and a peanut sauce, I knew I just had to try it.  The flavor of this salad is completely different from my tried and true, so I think there needs to be space in my recipe box for both!

This recipe does not call for chicken, but if you wanted to serve it as an entree dish you could absolutely add a couple of cups of diced chicken.  If doing so, my recommendation would be to increase the dressing by 1/2 and use that additional dressing to toss the chicken with prior to adding it to the salad.  That would enhance the yummy peanut flavor, versus adding plain chicken which would decrease the flavor of the dressing.

Unlike the original recipe, which I think tastes better after the first day (the ramen noodles get nice and soft), I prefer this salad served right away while the noodles are nice and crisp (you just sauteed them in butter to toast them for heaven's sake).  I am curious if you agree...

One Year Ago: Chilled Raspberry Soup
                          Strawberry Cream Cake

(recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up)
printable version

2 pounds nappa cabbage
5 green onions
3 packages ramen noodles
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup sesame seeds

3/4 cup peanut oil *
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 Tbs. soy sauce

Cut the end off of your cabbage, discarding it.  Thinly slice the rest of the cabbage and place it into a large bowl.  Slice your green onions and toss them into your bowl.
Carefully crush your ramen noodles while still in their package (you could open them and place in a ziplock bag if preferred).  Place butter in a large skillet over medium heat to melt.  Add almonds, sesame seed and crushed ramen noodles.  Cook, stirring frequently, until everything is toasted well.  Set aside.
Combine peanut oil, sugar, rice vinegar and soy sauce for the dressing.  Mix well until well combined and sugar is dissolved.
When ready to serve, combine cabbage, raman noodles and dressing and toss until well coated.

*If you cannot find peanut oil, there is a tip for substitution here*

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