I mentioned this dish to somebody a long time ago, I finally got around to writing a recipe. Not a strange occurrence with me: I am the Queen of Procrastination.
But let’s not talk about that. Let’s talk about this delicious dish, half salad, half cold dish, and one of my go-to foods when I crave pasta but want something lighter instead.
If you, like me, are a huge fan of Asian cuisine you might recognize this as something very similar to Taiwanese cold noodles.
Back when I lived in Santo Domingo there was a little, hole in the wall restaurant not far from our home. It was brought to my attention by a Taiwanese acquaintance that recommended it highly. He was right. The food, all vegetarian, was excellent, and to top it all, it was inexpensive and the place spotless. It also seemed like the unofficial Taiwanese embassy in Santo Domingo.
Once I left Santo Domingo, I craved this dish all too often, but by then I had decided to limit my carbohydrate intake, training for when my genes catch up with me and I become a diabetic, like almost everybody in my family. But not only did I switch from noodles to zucchini, I also made a few other changes to the recipe, starting with the use of homemade mambá as the base for the dressing. Hey, there’s the Dominican connection!
For some reason, maybe the fact that the “noodles” look almost like the real thing, it tricks my brain into forgetting that I am just eating vegetables. Amazingly, my husband, who seems to despise vegetables in all their incarnations, loved it too.
Maybe I am on to something.
- 3 large zucchinis
- 1 large carrot, peeled
- 6 cups of water
- 5 cups of ice water
- 5 tablespoons of mambá
- 2 tablespoons of low-salt soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar
- ⅓ cup of toasted, unsalted peanuts, chopped finely
- Slice the zucchini with a potato peeler. Discard the top and bottom slices that are almost all peel. Arrange the slices one on top of the other, and cut into very fine strips with a knife. I also own this cutter that makes making vegetable noodles a piece of cake.
- Repeat the same process with the carrot.
- Boil water in a pot. When it breaks a boil add the carrots. Cook over high heat for 30 seconds.
- Remove from the heat and add the zucchini. Let it rest for 30 seconds. Remove the zucchini and carrots from the hot water and place in the ice water.
- Remove the water and let the carrots and zucchini rest on a paper towel.
- Mix the mambá with the soy sauce and vinegar.
- Place the zucchini and carrot in a bowl, mix dressing in.
- Chill. When it's time to serve sprinkle with the chopped peanuts