Asian Noodle Salad

Featured in Star-Bulletin on March 1, 2006.

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Ingredients:

This salad is brimming with bright, colorful vegetables and the earthy flavor of mushrooms. It's delicious hot, as a dinner entree, or as a cold salad for lunch.

8 ounces Japanese udon noodles or vermicelli, uncooked
4 ounces fresh pea pods, cut into thin strips
2 tablespoons dark roasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon peanut oil
2 tablespoons lite soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1/2 ounce dried mushrooms, such as Chinese tree ear, shiitake, porcini, or morels soaked in warm water for 15 minutes, drained and sliced
1 small carrot, thinly sliced
2 green onion, cut diagonally with tops
1 cup bean sprouts
2 tablespoons chopped dry-roasted peanuts or cashews

Directions:

Cook the noodles according to the package directions, omitting salt. Thirty seconds before the noodles are cooked, add the pea pods to blanch. Drain the pasta and pea pods. Mix the sesame oil and peanut oil in a small bowl. In another small bowl, combine the soy sauce and vinegar. Whisk in 2 tablespoons of the oil mixture. Put the hot noodles in a large bowl. Mix the remaining tablespoon of oil mixture into the noodles. Add the mushrooms, pea pods, carrot, onions, and bean sprouts. Add the soy sauce dressing; toss well. Sprinkle with chopped nuts. Serve hot or cold. Makes 6 servings.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving:
Calories 243 (Calories from fat 81), Total Fat 9 g, Saturated Fat 1 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 213 mg, Total Carbohydrate 35 g, Dietary Fiber 4 g, Sugars 5 g, Protein 7 g, Exchanges:2 Starch, 1 Vegetable, 1 1/2 Fat

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