Thai Crystal Noodle Salad
An easy and light combination of cellophane noodles, shrimp and ground chicken, pungently flavored with a Thai-style lime dressing and fresh cilantro.
peeled and deveined
Juice of 1 lime
Freshly ground black pepper
mung bean noodles
fresh cilantro leaves
medium head tender leaf lettuce
torn into pieces
For the dressing:
freshly squeezed lime juice
Asian hot sauce or crushed red pepper to taste
Bring a pot of water to a simmer, remove from the heat and add the cellophane noodles.
Soak just until the noodles are clear and tender, anywhere from 3 to 10 minutes depending on the brand. Check frequently. Drain, rinse with cool water, drain again and set aside.
While in the strainer you can snip them here and there with a pair of kitchen shears so they'll be a little easier to portion out.
Heat the oil over medium-high heat, add the shallots and garlic and cook until soft and fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add the ground chicken and cook until no longer pink, breaking up the meat with a spatula as it cooks. Add the sugar, fish sauce, lime juice and a few grinds of black pepper.
Toss to combine, then add the shrimp. Continue cooking, stirring constantly until the shrimp turn pink and opaque, about 2 minutes.
Add the green onions, remove from the heat and set aside.
In the bottom of a large bowl, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients until the sugar has dissolved. Add the noodles and toss to combine thoroughly.
Add the cilantro leaves and toss again.
Place a portion of lettuce on each of 4 serving plates.
Top with a portion of noodles and arrange slices of tomato and cucumber around the edges
Mound a portion of the meat and shrimp mixture in the center, top with crushed peanuts and serve immediately.
Tips for Making This Recipe
Although not part of the classic recipe, feel free to add Thai basil and/or mint along with the cilantro for extra flavor.