Thursday, June 25, 2009

Asian Veggie Slaw with Peanut Noodles

I've never liked the nasty mess known as coleslaw. It has a permanent association with sobering up at a diner at 4am- you know the nasty mess I speak of. Even when you're falling on the floor drunk and a heaping plate of disco fries still isn't enough, you don't touch the coleslaw with a ten foot pole because it must have been sitting in the kitchen all day and continually recycled on every diner's plate. Who wants to eat that? Not me!

I'm devoting my next several recipes to new takes on summer BBQ staples. In this one, I cleaned up the nasty mayo-filled coleslaw mess and gave it a more clean, Asian influence that is vegan as well! I'm including red cabbage in the recipe below... I realized at the last minute that I didn't actually have cabbage in my refrigerator, and it would have added not only a nice crunch, but a pop of color to the Asian slaw too. With a little bit of spice and some crispness from the rice vinegar, I decided to balance out these non-traditional coleslaw flavors with some peanut noodles. Let this version of coleslaw become the new staple at your next backyard party!

The Whats:

* 1/2 a large daikon radish, peeled
* 1 large carrot, peeled
* 1 medium cucumber
* 1/4 of a medium red onion, thinly sliced
* 1 cup of shredded red cabbage
* 3 tbsp. rice vinegar
* 1 tbsp. soy sauce
* 1 tbsp. lime juice
* 1 tsp. sriracha sauce

For the noodles:
* half a package of thin, glass noodles (feel free to use your favorite noodles!)
* 3 tbsp. soy sauce
* 1 tbsp. rice vinegar
* 1 tsp. lime juice
* 1 tbsp. sesame oil
* 2 tbsp. chunky peanut butter

The Hows:

1) Using a julienne peeler, julienne the daikon, carrot, and cucumber and place into a medium mixing bowl. Add the onion and the shredded red cabbage to the mix.

2) In a small, separate bowl, combine rice vinegar, soy sauce, lime juice, and sriracha sauce and whisk together. Pour sauce over the vegetables and toss until veggies are well coated. Set aside to marinate for 30 minutes.

3) Bring a medium saucepan filled with water to a boil. Add rice noodles and cook for about 5 minutes, or until noodles have softened. Drain noodles in a colander and rinse with cold water for 2 minutes. Set aside.

4) In the same saucepan over low heat, add soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, lime juice, and peanut butter. Stir together until mixture is hot and peanut butter has melted down. Turn off burner. Add the rice noodles and toss until noodles are well coated with the peanut sauce. If desired, add a teaspooon of sriracha. Plate half a cup of rice noodles and top with veggie slaw.

Serve warm, or keep noodles and slaw in the fridge for half an hour and serve chilled.

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