March 19, 2013

Thai Chicken Noodle Salad

My hubby loves me. He takes care of me through all my medical mishaps, takes care of my boys, picks up my slack, and puts up with my silliness. Take last night for example. With a half-numb face and mouth full of gauze, there was no way I could eat this salad. So he taste-tested it for me. Not only that, he let me dress up his bowl, even with lovely, photogenic scallions (which he HATES). I picked them off, but still. He's a good husband. I love him too.

This is NOT the richest, most filling meal in the world. But if you're looking for something light, refreshing, and tasty, this is it! I can't wait to try it this summer and grill the chicken!


Thai Chicken Noodle Salad
Printable Recipe

For the chicken:
4-5 boneless skinless chicken breasts
4 Tb fish sauce
6-7 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
4 tsp soy sauce
4 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/2-1 tsp ground cayenne pepper
2 tsp curry powder
Juice of one lime
2/3 cup coconut milk

For the salad:
thin rice noodles (vermicelli) prepared according to package instructions (check if they're don enough for you, we liked them soaked longer)
limes
cucumbers
carrots
scallions
basil
chopped peanuts

Slice the chicken breast across grain into chunks, 3-4 per chicken breast. Whisk together all marinade ingredients in a small bowl. Toss chicken in marinade in a bowl or ziploc bag, making sure all pieces are well coated. Marinate the meat for at least 1 hour, up to 4 hours in the refrigerator.

Get all your toppings ready for your salad. Chop nuts and basil, dice scallions, slice cucumbers, and peel carrots. We liked "carrot ribbons"; I just peeled the carrot then used the peeler to slice the carrot into ribbons. Have sliced limes for squeezing over the salad. Of course, all these toppings are optional.

Cook the chicken (reserve the marinade!!) on a rack in a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet under the broiler for about 10-15 minutes, or thread onto skewers and grill. Let rest a few minutes before serving. Collect all juices on the foil from under the chicken, and add to a small saucepan with leftover marinade  bring to a simmer on medium heat for a few minutes, until it thickens into a sauce. Serve over the salad!

Top individual servings of noodles (warm or chilled) with veggies, chicken, and sauce. Enjoy!
Okay, so it's not quite as pretty as the picture that inspired me, but I'm pretty happy with it!! And boy, my new camera is seriously helping my dinner pictures, huh?? :)
This is seriously yummy. I didn't have nuts or basil to put on it, sorry. But they'd be awesome. And I didn't show you the sauce, because we discovered and created it halfway through dinner. It's okay, you'll be glad we did! The sauce takes it over the top!
The chicken is creamy and coconutty and packed with spices and a bit of tang from the lime, a hint of heat (or a kick!!) and the contrast with the crisp, cool veggies is the kind of combo I cannot get enough of. I took little, itty-bitty tastes. I picked the wrong meal to make the night I couldn't eat!!
Thank goodness there were leftovers! :)

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