un-done summer rolls with tangy thai mint dressing

By • July 3, 2012 1 Comments

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Author Notes: too hot to eat? this endlessly variable one-bowl dinner is our go-to for steamy summer days, with plenty of salty tang to replenish and restore, and tons of flavor to entice the appetite. change up the protein (this is a great meal for a mixed company of vegans and carnivores as each bowl can be customized with no extra fuss), the veggies, the noodles--the super sauce is what brings it all together, and it makes a great dipping medium for other foods, too!a raisin + a porpoise


Serves 4-6

the dressing

  • 1/4 cup each finely chopped fresh mint, basil & cilantro
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons finely-grated fresh ginger, more or less to taste
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha or other chile paste or hot sauce, or to taste
  • 1 handful finely chopped fresh chives or scallions
  • 2 tablespoons canola or other neutral oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar or sucanat (optional, but a nice balance)
  1. Combine all these ingredients in a jar or small bowl and whisk thoroughly together. Correct the seasoning to your taste.

the other stuff

  • 1 pound any tender asian noodle; we have used cellophane, soba, lo mein and rice noodles, all to good effect
  • 1 pound tofu (see note in recipe)
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 bunch of greens, any type
  • 1 tomato, thinly sliced or coarsely chopped
  • half pound grilled, roasted or broiled chicken, fish, steak or other cooked protein that lurks in your larder
  1. Cut the tofu into 2x2xhalf inch blocks. Coat lightly with oil, and a little coarse salt and pepper, and roast on a parchment-lined baking sheet at 375 until crispy and golden on the outside, about 15 minutes (I use the toaster oven for this). Alternatively, buy a nice package of seasoned tofu wherever fine tofus are sold and substitute that. Whichever way you go, cut the tofu into thin slices or small chunks that amuse you.
  2. Cook the noodles until tender; drain, refresh with cold water and toss with some oil to keep separate. Reserve.
  3. Cook the greens lightly, refresh under cold water, drain well and coarsely chop. Reserve.
  4. Assemble each diner's bowl: a wad of noodles, topped to one side with a small pile of greens, next to a little colony of tomato pieces, next to a few strips of tofu, next to a portion of the other protein. Pass the sauce. Turn up the fan.

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