Crisp noodle salad with chicken

Crisp noodle salad with chicken

New Thai Food
Jeremy Simons

I use Waisen rice vermicelli for this dish, which is a reinterpretation of the famous mee grob. You can garnish the salad with finely shredded omelette and a wedge of lime if you like.


Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons canola oil
150g minced chicken
5 raw prawns, shelled, deveined and chopped
150g palm sugar, shaved
100g preserved yellow beans, mashed to a paste
1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 mandarin, juiced, zest reserved for salad


Quantity Ingredient
100g rice vermicelli
1 egg, beaten to make an eggwash
500ml canola oil, for deep frying


Quantity Ingredient
4 garlic chives, cut into 1 cm lengths
1 long red chilli, julienned
1/2 mandarin, zest julienned
1 red asian shallot, finely sliced
1 pickled garlic bulb, finely sliced
2 squares firm tofu, diced and deep-fried
15g coriander leaves


  1. To prepare the noodles, soak the rice vermicelli in water for 20 minutes until soft. Drain and spread out on paper towel to absorb any excess moisture. Separate the noodles into individual strands as much as possible, then lightly brush with a little eggwash – this will make the noodles turn a golden colour when cooked.
  2. Heat the oil in a wok to 160°C, or until a cube of bread dropped into the oil turns brown in 25–30 seconds. Drop a small bunch of noodles into the hot oil – they should separate and cover the surface, and look like a spider’s web. When they finish sizzling, after about 30 seconds, remove with a Chinese spider (skimmer/spatula). Drain on paper towel. Repeat with the remaining noodles, then pour off the oil.
  3. To continue preparing the dish, heat 2 tablespoons oil in the wok over a medium–high heat and stir-fry the chicken and prawns until cooked, for about 4–5 minutes. Drain off any excess liquid, put the chicken and prawn mixture in a bowl and set aside.
  4. Melt the palm sugar with 1½ tablespoons water in a small heavy-based saucepan over a medium–high heat to help break down the sugar. Simmer to caramelise, stirring frequently, for 6–8 minutes, then add the yellow beans and fish sauce and stir to thicken. Remove from the heat and fold through the chicken and prawn mixture. Set aside.
  5. Just before you’re ready to serve, transfer the mixture to a large bowl and stir in the mandarin juice to mix well.
  6. Add all the salad ingredients and lightly mix to bind them together. Break up the crisp noodles and toss through the salad. Serve at once, as the noodles lose their crispness if they’re left to sit for too long.
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