Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Crunchy Asian Noodle Salad

I love asian flavors, but I've only made a few vegetarian dishes using those flavors that have really been repeat recipes that we would have again. This is one of those! I first made this recipe about five years ago and we've been eating it ever since. It's a great dish to take to a BBQ or potluck since it's a cold salad. Also great in the hot summers!

When I made this the other night for dinner my husband said "I could eat this every night for dinner" "vegetarian husband" (let's go with VH for short) approved! Both my kids (4 and almost 1) ate this. It's always a good dinner when I don't hear too much complaining or food being thrown on the floor. Actually, I won't kid myself, food ALWAYS ends up on the floor with kid #2. There's just something about those highchairs I guess that entice them to throw.

So this recipe comes from Ina Garten. You know, the "Barefoot Contessa" of Food Network fame. I used to watch her show religiously. I would say I was kind of obsessed with the Food Network back in the day. Now that I don't have cable, not so much. But that Ina can cook! I've tried a bunch of her recipes and they've been great. I only made a few changes to her original recipe for this one and they're simply just personal preferences. First, I cut the amount of oil in half to only 1/2 cup. Now I've done it both ways and they both taste equally yummy. Putting in all the oil does make the noodles, how should I say this without putting you off this recipe?....kind of more slippery? Less clumpy? So by only adding half, the dressing does tend to be thicker, but since it significantly cuts the fat and calories out, I'm totally fine with that. I also added fresh baby spinach and grated carrot this time around to increase my vegetable intake for the day. The beauty of the recipe is that you can pretty much add any vegetable you want. I've done it with blanched broccoli and would love to try it with shredded cabbage too. Oh and I didn't use fresh parsley. You know my feelings about fresh parsley...never have it, never use it.


Crunchy Asian Noodle Salad
Prep time: 10 min Cooking time: 25 min Servings: 6

Tips: (1) Buy fresh ginger, peel it, then stick it in the freezer. When you need fresh ginger, just take it out of the freezer and grate what you need using a fine cheese grater. (2) Most sesame seeds you can buy in the store are not toasted. To toast, put sesame seeds in a dry frying pan and cook them, while stirring over a medium heat until they are light brown and fragrant. Watch them carefully so they won't burn. 

1 lb thin spaghetti
1 lb sugar snap peas
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/3 cup soy sauce
3 TB sesame oil
1 TB honey (or brown sugar)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
3 TB toasted white sesame seeds
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
2 red bell peppers, thinly sliced
4 scallions, chopped

  • Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Drain and rinse well with cold water and set aside. 
  • Blanch the sugar snap peas by boiling them in salted water for a few minutes and then sticking them in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. This will cook them but keep them nice and crisp. 
  • Mix up the dressing by whisking together the oil, vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, garlic, ginger and sesame seeds. 
  • Combine your vegetables with the spaghetti and dressing in a large bowl and toss. Salad can be stored covered in the refrigerator until time to serve. 


  1. That ginger tip just changed my life. Or will, when I start doing it. This looks delicious. Once again, I'm left in awe of your abilities. I mean, I liked you before you started your blog, but now....

    1. If my blog made you like me more...then my work here is done!