Thai Shrimp Salad

by Rachel on September 9, 2011

Thai Shrimp Salad

It’s way too hot at our house and the requisite end of summer fires are burning both in California and in Texas.  I met some friends for lunch in West LA today and it was far too hot to eat anything not frozen on a stick.  I wanted to lay down on a cool stone floor while someone quietly sprayed a light mist of cold water over my head.  Instead I marched around an outdoor mall running errands and then sat in traffic.  Lovely.  This salad is the perfect thing for a miserable hot Indian summer day.  It’s light, but satisfying and strangely comforting the way mac ‘n cheese can be, but without the mac or the cheese.

Thai Shrimp Salad (4-5 main course servings)

  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon peeled fresh ginger, finely minced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons hot chili sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 cups snow peas, trimmed and cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced thin
  • 1 orange bell pepper, sliced thin
  • Two 9-oz boxes Asian rice noodles (linguine makes a fine substitute)
  • 2 pounds cooked shrimp
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, minced
  • 4 green onions, sliced on the diagonal very thin

Whisk first seven ingredients together for dressing. Can be made ahead.

Cook noodles according to package instructions.  Drain. In a medium-sized mixing bowl toss together noodles with just under half of the dressing. They should be just coated.

In a large mixing bowl toss together shrimp, cilantro, snow peas, and bell peppers with remaining salad dressing.

Serve noodles onto plates.  Arrange shrimp mixture over noodles.  Garnish with green onions on top.  Serve.

Just one note – it seems to me that 2 lbs of shrimp is an excessive amount of shrimp for 4-5 servings of salad.  But every time I make this salad my husband and children make quick work of the whole massive PILE-o-shrimp.  If you are related to people with a certain amount of self-control you may be able to make this salad go a bit farther than I can.  I buy my shrimp RAW (cheaper) and cook it myself.  If you are game for this step heat 2 teaspoons of peanut oil on high until your skillet is quite hot.  Add the shrimp and 2 teaspoons of soy sauce.  Stir and cook until the shrimp is pink, NOT grey.  Don’t overcook or the shrimp will be tough.  At the very end toss the shrimp with 1 teaspoon of toasted sesame oil.  Don’t let my children get anywhere near the pan of cooked shrimp or they’ll consume half of them before you put the salad on the table.

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