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Makes 3 servings
For the salad:
- 1/2 pound (usually half a package) noodles
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red pepper
- 1/4 cup shredded or thinly sliced carrots
- 1/4 cup shredded cabbage (or chopped spinach, or some other green)
- Sesame seeds
- 2 teaspoons peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for tossing the noodles
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil (see note)
- 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar (see note)
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
- Salt, to taste
- A note regarding noodle choice: Any long, thin pasta will do in this recipe, but if you want to go the rice noodle route (for taste and/or gluten reasons), vermicelli and other, wider rice noodles (like those pictured here) hold up much better than brown rice noodles when cooked and then chilled. Regular spaghetti, in my opinion, is also a heroic move.
- Cook noodles in salted water according to package instructions. Drain, toss warm noodles in a dash of olive oil to keep them from sticking, and store them in the fridge to cool. The noodles can be made in advance and kept in the fridge for a few days, for a throw-together salad that's ready in minutes.
- Assemble the dressing and mix-ins while the pasta is chilling: Whisk dressing ingredients together in a small bowl, and add salt to taste. When the noodles are cold, toss together with red pepper, carrots, cabbage, and as much dressing as you like. Top with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.
- Note: You might not have sesame oil and rice vinegar just hanging around, but you really should. One bottle will last you a long time, and I have found that being able to recreate Asian flavor profiles in my own kitchen means that I will do that all the time. Stir fries, salad dressings -- whatever.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!