What’s for dinner? Ah, the eternal question, especially when the refrigerator seems almost bare and you are exhausted from working all day. I looked inside my fridge and faced that dilemma tonight. And my stomach cried, “Hungry, feed me!” But all I saw was a head of red cabbage and some left over rotisserie chicken from WholeFoods. Further investigation yielded some carrots and green onions. What can I do with these meager offerings? Well, I thought some cabbage slaw salad with chicken, but since I can’t really eat raw vegetables nowadays (my cursed stomach problems :(, but then again today is the first day I actually felt hungry in two weeks!), I thought maybe a variation on Pad Thai. I ended up making a noodle salad with sauteed cabbage, carrots and chicken in peanut sauce.
First, I boiled the water for the noodle (no egg noodles, no problem, I had linguini) while julienning cabbage, carrots and celery. I think that you want to start cooking noodles here and make the peanut sauce, which I will come back to. Shred the rotisserie chicken for a little protein (BTW, such a useful thing to have around for quick meals). Or cube tofu to add to vegetables to be sauteed. Then, I sliced one onion thinly and sautéed it in a bit of vegetable oil. I added the veggies and cooked very briefly until it is just cooked through. When the noodles are cooked, you rinse it in cold water (the Asian noodle treatment!). I would have actually just wilted the vegetables by pouring hot pasta water over vegetables and skipped the sautéing if my digestive systems were more robust. Toss everything together. Voilà, your dinner. I usually put some sliced scallion and sesame seeds on top to finish off. 20 minutes.
Peanut sauce: peanut butter (about 2-3 Tsp), Vietnamese fish sauce (3-6 tsp), rice wine vinegar (1-3 tsp), sugar (1 tsp), soy sauce, sesame oil, Sriracha sauce, salt, pepper, lime juice
I start out with smaller amount of each ingredient to start out and keep adjusting according to my taste test. Add maybe 1-2 Tsp of water to thin out the sauce.