Enjoy this tasty crispy pork salad recipe for dinner tonight.
Remedy cold and blustery days with this Asian-inspired noodle dish from Louise Pickford's book Oodles of Noodles.
- Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
- 12 Asian or red shallots, thinly sliced
- 5 oz dried rice vermicelli noodles
- 5 oz pancetta, diced
- 1/3 young or green papaya, peeled, halved and deseeded
- 1 cucumber, deseeded and thinly sliced
- Small bunch each: fresh Vietnamese mint, cilantro and Thai basil
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- 2 tbsp grated palm or coconut sugar
- 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 red bird’s-eye or Thai chilies, deseeded and thinly sliced (optional)
- 4 tbsp dry-roasted peanuts, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp toasted ground rice*
*Toasted ground rice is made by toasting grains of rice in a wok and then grinding them in a mortar and pestle to form a powder.
1 Pour the oil into a wok or old saucepan until it reaches about 2 inches up the sides of the pan, and set the pan over medium heat. Test the temperature of the oil by dropping in a cube of bread – it should crisp within 30 seconds. Deep-fry the shallots in batches until crisp and golden, 2 to 3 minutes, being careful not to let them burn. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels; set aside.
2 Soak the noodles in a bowl of hot water until softened, 10 to 20 minutes. Drain well, pat dry and set aside in a large mixing bowl. Meanwhile, dry-fry the pancetta in a small frying pan set over high heat until crisp and golden, 5 to 8 minutes; set aside to cool.
3 Thinly slice the papaya and cut into long thin strips. Add to the noodles, along with the cucumber, herbs, cherry tomatoes and pancetta.
4 Whisk together the fish sauce, sugar and lime juice in a small bowl until the sugar is dissolved. Pour over the salad; toss well to coat and divide among four plates. Top with the red bird’s-eye chilies, if using, the peanuts and ground rice and serve with the deep-fried shallots.
Cook time: 30 minutes
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Excerpted from Oddles of Noodles by Louise Pickford.
Recipes Copyright © 2015 Louise Pickford, Photography copyright © 2015 Ian Wallace. Excerpted by permission of Ryland, Peters & Small and CICO Books. All rights reserved.