Thai Cashew Salad


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The undeniable simplicity of this salad is astounding! The crunchy astringent taste of the cucumbers, the sweet crisp edge of the carrots, cashews and red peppers, the pungent, licorice notes of the cilantro and basil and the spicy, salty, sweet and sourness of the lime, soy and vinegar and chili produces a memorable flavor explosion that you will need to make again and again. You may substitute roasted almonds for the cashews, but the sweet tone of the cashews will be missing. However, the salad will still be amazingly “Thai.”

Salad Ingredients:

1 English cucumber

1 carrot, grated or julienned

1 cup whole roasted cashews, regular or unsalted

1/2 large red bell pepper, OR 1 small red pepper, sliced thinly

2 spring (green) onions, sliced

generous handful of fresh cilantro and fresh basil

Dressing:

1 Tbsp. lime juice

1 Tbsp. soy sauce

1 Tbsp. fish sauce

1 tsp. white wine vinegar, or rice vinegar

2-3 cloves fresh garlic, pressed or minced

1 fresh red chili, de-seeded and minced, OR 1-2 tsp. chili sauce, OR 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. dried crushed chili

1-2 tsp. white sugar (to taste)

pinch of white pepper or substitute regular black pepper

Directions:

Mix all salad ingredients in a large bowl, toss lightly. Whisk together all dressing ingredients or pulse in a food processor just until combined. Or use a mortar and pestle. Right before serving, drizzle dressing over salad and toss again lightly. Serve immediately. Serves 2

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