Thai Basil Cold Noodle Salad to Serve with Grilled Chicken
4 boneless skinless chicken thighs, sliced and marinaded in soy sauce for 1 hour. Grill until chicken is fully cooked (165°F on a thermometer)
2 cups shredded romaine lettuce
1½ cups sliced cucumbers
½ cups julienned carrot
⅓ cup chopped fresh mint leaves, save some whole leaves for garnish.
⅓ cup chopped fresh Thai basil leaves
½ lb dried rice stick noodles (flat and pretty straight), cooked to package directions
- DIPPING SAUCE (yield 1.5 cups, makes extra)
Keeps 1 month refrigerated; this makes extra.
2 small cloves garlic, sliced
1 teaspoon ground chili paste
1 fresh Thai bird chili, chopped (optional, can use less, or in a pinch can substitute a seeded serrano)
¼ cup fish sauce (the milder lighter-colored dipping version)
⅔ cup hot water
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice with pulp
¼ cup sugar
2 tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts
10 fresh cilantro sprigs, chopped
Vietnamese dipping sauce (ingredients above, recipe below)
- Cook by adding to a large pot of boiling water that’s been removed from heat, and let stand for 10 or more minutes, stirring occasionally. Soak until noodles are soft but firm. Then drain, or serve straight from the water using tongs, and store any extra in cold water, covered, in the fridge. Bigger/thicker noodles take a lot longer.
- Vietnamese Dipping Sauce
- Place garlic, chili paste, chili, and fish sauce in a jar and use a stick blender to vaporize.
- Combine the garlic mixture with the remaining ingredients. Stir until sugar has dissolved
- Combine all salad ingredients and toss gently.
- Place about a cup of the salad mix in individual pasta bowls.
- Top each with about two cups of noodles.
- Put one sliced chicken thigh on the noodles, and garnish with the peanuts and cilantro.
- Each guest should drizzle on 3-4 tablespoons of the Vietnamese dipping sauce, and then toss the noodles several times with chopsticks (or fork) to blend the ingredients.