I made this about a year ago and it was delicious! The problem was, I didn’t write down how I made it and more importantly, what the dressing comprised of. Ugh, I hate when I do that, or don’t do as was the case here.
So in order to be able to make this again, as many times as I want, I decided to make it again and write it down this time. With much research, (and much eating, lol) I finally (FINALLY) got it right.
Note: As is the case of many Asian recipes, and fresh food in general, there is a fair amount of knife work here but I promise you, it is totally worth the time and effort it takes to do this right. Also, I highly recommend the Tsang Bangkok brand peanut sauce – oh my!
Vietnamese Spring Roll Salad
1 bunch Asparagus cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large Red Bell Pepper, julienned
2 Carrots cut into 2-inch pieces then julienned
½ pound Snow Peas stemmed and strings removed, left whole if small, or cut in half if large
8-ounces Rice Vermicelli
1 tsp. Salt
1 pound of medium shrimp, peeled, deveined, and cooked
1 medium jalapeno or 2 Thai chilies, stemmed, seeded and minced, optional
½ cup each, loosely packed basil, cilantro, and mint, coarsely chopped
½ cup coarsely chopped roasted salted peanuts, optional
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 ½ tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon salt
3 to 4 tablespoons purchased Peanut Sauce
3 tablespoons Olive Oil
Blanch the asparagus and snow peas in boiling, salted water for 2 minutes. Drain and place in cold water to stop the cooking.
Bring 2 quarts of water to boil in a medium saucepan. Stir in salt and rice vermicelli. Cook until noodles are tender but not mushy, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain noodles and rinse under cold running water until cool. Drain again and transfer to large bowl.
Combine the first 5 ingredients of the dressing in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in the olive oil. Taste and season as needed. Once emulsified, add to the rice vermicelli and toss well.
To the large bowl, add the red peppers, carrots, shrimp, jalapeno, and peanuts, if using. Toss well to coat. Finish with the fresh herbs and toss. If possible, let sit for 30 minutes before serving. (On the counter or refrigerated)
Yields: 6 main course servings