Friday, April 16, 2010

Cold Somen Salad


Somen salad is a Hawaiian style potluck salad, which is assembled in a 9X13 pan for easy transportation. To fancy it up, I put it on a large platter for a crowd. But when we eat it at home, I prefer to make individual salads that everyone builds themselves. I just divide up the noodles on plates and have all the toppings and the dressing on the side.

In Hawaii you might find kamabuko (pink & white, block fish cake) and char siu (red, Chinese bbq pork) added to this salad. But I didn’t have any. So, my salad isn’t as colorful. A simple and satisfying cold noodle salad tossed with crispy vegetables and dressed with sesame vinaigrette.

8oz. somen noodles, cooked according to directions
½ pound ham, julienned
½ cucumber, seeded and julienned
½ iceberg lettuce, shredded
2 Japanese egg sheets, see recipe on my blog
Green onions for garnish (optional)
¼ cup Kikkoman soy sauce
2 Tbsp. water
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup seasoned rice vinegar
1 Tbsp. salad oil
1 tsp. sesame oil
2 Tbsp. sesame seeds, toasted
¼ tsp. ginger, minced
¼ tsp. garlic, minced

To make the dressing place all the ingredients in a jar and shake to mix. It will separate as it sits. Shake before dressing the salad to mix.

Cook the somen according to directions on package, about 3 min. Drain and rinse under cold running water in a strainer. Then chill. The noodles will clump up and stick together. Not to worry, they will separate beautifully when dressed.

Place the noodles in individual plates, a large platter or a 9X13 pan. Top in this order; shredded lettuce, ham, egg and cucumber.

Pour dressing lightly over salad. You will have more dressing than you need. Remember you can always add, but you can’t take it out. Serve the extra dressing on the side.

Garnish with green onions and sesame seeds.

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