When the weather is hot, the last thing I want is to make my house—or myself—hotter. Turn on the oven? No thanks. A million different varieties of salad are a culinary snapshot of my summer.
Anything quick with light, fresh, and bright flavors is right up my alley in the warm summer months. Coconut, ginger, and lime dressing on chilled rice noodles with shrimp, cilantro, and cool crunchy veggies? A little bit of summertime heaven! I want to dump this dressing on everything. If carrying a bottle of it in my purse wasn’t frowned upon, you better believe I would be doing it!
Shrimp are an awesome lean and fast cooking protein for summer! I used to hate cleaning them but then I discovered “easy peel” versions in the freezer section and fresh at some seafood counters. Alternately, you can buy them pre-cooked, but the end result just won’t be quite as flavorful. I would sauté your own if you can. Shrimp are so fast and easy! Can you think of any other food that literally tells you when its done by turning pink?! Shrimp, thank you for eliminating the guesswork. Also, you are very tasty.
Add in that it can be made in fewer than 30 minutes, and life just got a little bit sweeter! And coconuty, gingery, and limey-er too. 😉
Coconut Ginger & Lime Noodle Salad with Shrimp
8 oz. dried rice stick noodles
1 lb. frozen large deveined “easy peel” shrimp
1 clove garlic grated
1 tsp. grated ginger
1 tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 tbsp. canola oil
1 Persian cucumber, thinly sliced
3-4 breakfast radishes, thinly sliced
¾ c. cilantro leaves
crushed red pepper flakes
¼ c. chopped roasted peanuts
pinch of each salt a pepper
Coconut Lime Dressing:
6 tbsp. unsweetened coconut milk (not reduced fat)
3 tbsp. fresh lime juice
4 tsp. fish sauce
1 tsp. soy sauce (or GF alternative)
1 garlic clove, grated
1 tbsp. ginger grated
1 tbsp. coconut sugar
¼ – ½ tsp. chili oil (depending how spicy you want it)
¼ c. canola oil
Bring large pot of water to a boil and add rice stick noodles. Cook until just tender or al dente. For me, this was about 4-5 minutes, but the length of time will vary slightly depending on the noodles you choose. Be careful not to overcook the noodles or else the salad won’t hold up well. Drain hot water and add cold water and ice cubes to chill noodles and stop them from continuing to cook.
In a jar or bowl, combine all ingredients for the coconut lime dressing except canola oil. Whisk to combine then add the canola oil in a steady stream while whisking constantly until emulsified.
Peel the remaining shells off of shrimp (if any). I like to leave their tails for aesthetic purposes, but that’s up to you.
To cook the shrimp, heat a large frying pan (with lid) with 1 tbsp. canola oil and grated ginger and garlic over medium high heat. Arrange shrimp so that there is minimal touching, and add a pinch of each salt and pepper. Add lime juice and immediately cover with lid. The lime juice will help “steam” the shrimp. Allow them to cook for about 1-2 minutes, then flip and cook for about 1 minute longer. Shrimp are among the easiest and fastest proteins to prepare. They tell you when they are cooked because the translucence disappears and they turn pink. Once they are pink, they are done (Don’t overcook!). Transfer shrimp to a bowl and set aside.
Drain the ice and water from the noodles and transfer to serving bowl. Pour the coconut lime dressing on the noodles. Toss to coat. Then add other toppings: cilantro, sliced radish, sliced cucumber, pinch of crushed pepper, and shrimp.
That’s it! You are all set to serve it up!