As the weather gets warmer, substantial salads are great as a main meal. This Thai-inspired noodle and mince salad ticks the box. The dressing has the unmistakable saltiness from pungent fish sauce and the mince is fragrant with ginger, lemongrass and, if you can get them, lime leaves.
Lime leaves come in pairs, so the four stipulated in the ingredients will actually look like eight leaves. These can be tricky to get hold of regularly. I buy a box from the frozen section of the Asian supermarket. Kept in the freezer these last a long time, and are on hand for whenever a recipe calls for them.
- For the mince:
1 tbsp (coconut) oil
- 750g lean mince (turkey or pork works well)
- 2 inches of ginger, peeled and grated
- 3 sticks of lemon grass, finely chopped
- 4 lime leaves, finely chopped
- 3 tbsp soy sauce (gluten-free if required)
- For the salad:
- 200g glass noodles, soaked until soft and then drained
- 1 carrot, peeled into ribbons
- 1/2 red pepper, cut into strips
- 2 spring onions, finely sliced
- Lettuce, shredded
- For the dressing:
- 3 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 1/2 tbsp caster sugar
- 2 limes, juiced
- 2 tsp chilli flakes
Step 1: Melt the coconut oil in a frying pan over a medium high heat. Add the mince and fry until browned and dry (there should be no liquid left in the pan).
Step 2: Add the ginger and lemongrass and cook for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Add the lime leaves and soy sauce and stir through until the pan is dry again. Remove from the heat.
Step 3: Combine the dressing ingredients together.
Step 4: In a large bowl, toss the noodles, salad ingredients and dressing together. Serve.