With a crispness in the air that can only mean fall is on its way, I want to embrace the last little bit of summer that we have, which is why I have enlisted my Mom to share her rice noodle salad recipe.
When Sloane was first born, my Mom made McGregor and me this salad. I remember the salad well, but I also remember being a complete zombie, so I didn’t have any memory of what it tasted like.
Luckily, she liked it so much that she continued making it at home, changing and perfecting things. Still, each time my Mom makes this rice noodle salad, she doesn’t measure a damn thing, and every time it is a little bit different.
While she was here, I watched her like a hawk and wrote down her ingredients. I also made her use measuring cups for the first time, ever.
Sidebar – I used to think I got my cooking ability from my great-grandma or my grandma, but now as I watch how my Mom cooks, I realize I actually got it from her. Often she will stumble on a recipe, say she wants to try it, and not follow one word of what it says. I do the exact same thing, and I thought it was just the way I operated. It turns out it is just what I learned from my Mom!
Anyways, this rice noodle salad is the perfect meal for a warm end-of-summer night.
+ The citrus in the dressing adds a tangy freshness but is happily balanced with the salty and sweet of the fish oil (or soy sauce) and brown sugar.
+ The crunch of the vegetables is unparalleled. I’m a crunchy kind of gal, so I appreciate that these veggies are all served raw, except for the green beans which are blanched.
+ The protein addition is entirely your choice. For me, as this is me holding onto summer while transitioning to fall, I use the protein as my way to warm up a cold salad. You could easily do chicken, tofu, or nothing and leave it as a fully veggie rice noodle salad.
+ It is also an easy to prep ahead of time to have a 15-minute throw together meal during a busy weeknight.
If you make it, I’d love to hear what you think!
Rice Noodle Salad
Serves 4 with a few leftovers
Ingredients for the salad
+ 1 package rice noodles (400g), cooked per package instructions and cooled
+ 3 Persian cucumbers, sliced and quartered
+ 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
+ 2 cups green beans, chopped into bite-sized pieced and blanched.
+1 red pepper, diced into bite-sized pieces
+1 serrano chili, diced (optional)
Ingredients for the Sauce
+ 1/4 cup canola oil
+ 2 Tbsp fish oil or soy sauce (fish oil will be more flavorful)
+ 3 limes, juiced
+ 1/2 shallot, finely diced
+ 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
+ 1/4 cup brown sugar
+ 1 tsp chili garlic sauce
Ingredients for the Steak (optional)
+ 1.5 lbs flank steak
+ 1/2 cup soy sauce
+ 1/2 cup teriyaki marinade
+ 2 Tbsp sesame oil
+ 2 cloves garlic, minced
+ salt and pepper
Omit steps 1, 2, 3, and 8 if not using steak.
1. At least 24 hrs in advance of making your rice noodle salad, marinate your steak. First, gently score your steak, making a diamond shape. Make your marinade by combining soy sauce, teriyaki marinade, sesame oil, garlic, and salt and pepper in a marinade container (or ziplock) and adding your steak. Shake the container around to make sure that the steak is well coated. Let sit in the fridge overnight, flipping your steak once during that 24 hr period.
2. The day you’re ready to make your rice noodle salad, turn your BBQ on to medium-high heat.
3. Cook your steak on the BBQ until your desired doneness is reached. I am a rare gal myself, so it’s typically under 10 minutes.
4. While your steak is cooking, make your sauce by combining canola oil, fish oil (or soy sauce), juiced limes, diced shallot, minced garlic, brown sugar, and chili garlic sauce (if using) into a bowl. Whisk well such that all ingredients are thoroughly combined.
5. Combine the cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, green beans, red pepper, and serrano chili (if using), season generously with salt and pepper.
6. Assemble the rice noodle salad in a large serving bowl. First, lay your noodles down, and add the vegetables over the top.
7. Drizzle your sauce over of the rice noodles and vegetables and mix well.
8. After your steak is cooked, has rested, and has been thinly sliced, lay it over top of your rice noodle salad.