Heftier than a salad but not so heavy nor as hot as a pasta dish, this Summer Cold Noodle Salad is our choice for dinner on sticky-hot, humid nights. Half of this noodle salad is raw—cool, crunchy vegetables—which means most of the preparation is simple assembly. The rest of the prep comes down to cooking and cooling noodles (your choice! Wheat, rice, soba, whatever you've got handy) and whisking together a quick peanut butter-based dressing. And since it's already cold, you can eat it straight out of the refrigerator the next day for lunch. Which means you may as well make a double batch!
1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
1/4 cup thinly sliced red pepper
1/4 cup shredded or thinly sliced carrots
1/4 cup shredded cabbage or dark leafy green of your choice
1/2 pound noodles of your choice
2 teaspoons peanut butter
1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
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We're assuming you already have salt, a little more than 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and a garlic clove, but if not, add them to your list too!
The Game Plan
15 minutes before dinner, boil noodles according to packaging, drain, cool with cold running water or a dunk in an ice bath, and toss in a splash of olive oil. Meanwhile whisk together the peanut butter, honey, two tablespoons olive oil, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, minced garlic clove, ginger, and salt to taste. Thinly slice red peppers, carrots, and cabbage.
Right when you are ready to sit down for dinner, combine the vegetables, dressing, and chilled noodles. Finish the salad with a sprinkle of sesame seeds right on top.
A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).