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A proper Thai noodle salad (easy vegetarian thai food)

I could drink this sharp, fragrant dressing, and I love the salad, resplendent with life-packed, multi-coloured, crisp vegetables.

Serves 4

250g egg thread noodles
200g fresh spinach
1 tsp tamari, plus a dash
couple of dashes of Tabasco
? cucumber, peeled and cut into thin batons
2 small carrots, peeled, cut in half and sliced on the diagonal
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 red pepper, seeded and finely sliced into thin strips
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
small bunch of coriander
1cm piece of fresh chilli, diced small
For the dressing:
125ml teriyaki sauce
100g light yellow bean sauce
juice of 1 lime
1 stalk lemongrass, very finely chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped very finely
5cm piece of fresh ginger, grated, juice squeezed out and the resulting liquid reserved

1. Cook the noodles in plenty of boiling water, either conventionally salted or, as I do for these Asian dishes, with a dash of soy sauce instead. Most very fine noodles are cooked in 4 minutes so watch carefully. Refresh well under cold water and drain properly.
2. Meanwhile, wash the spinach and wilt in a pan set over a low flame. Only add a splash of water if the spinach is ready-washed and looks bone dry. Allow to cool, and squeeze out any excess liquid, but don't be so zealous as to bleed the poor leaves to death. Season with a dash each of tamari and Tabasco.
3. Toss the cucumber and carrots in the rice vinegar – a little goes a long way. Mix the dressing ingredients together.
4. Mix the refreshed noodles, most of the macerated carrots and cucumber and the red pepper with the dressing. Then, heat the oil in a large non-stick pan or wok and add the mangetout and spring onions. Stir-fry for about 20 seconds over a strong heat, then reduce the heat to a whisper and add the remaining tamari and Tabasco.
5. Even if your sesame seeds are already toasted, it's as well to toss them for a few moments in a frying pan over a gentle heat to bring out their flavour.
6. To serve, twist the noodles with a large fork and place each mound into four individual large soup plates. Be liberal in your garnishing using the remaining vegetables, including the mangetout and spring onions as well as the wilted spinach.
7. Finally, sprinkle each plate with the toasted sesame seeds and garnish with small sprigs of coriander, a smattering of diced chilli and any remaining dressing, and serve.

Prep time: 20 minutes

Source: The Cranks Bible Nadine Abensur

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