Notes: This salad is traditionally made with finely sliced raw banana blossoms or cabbage; we've gotten excellent results with the cabbage. Spicy rau ram, found in Vietnamese markets, adds an aromatic pungency, but fresh mint is a very good alternative. For convenience, use frozen cooked shrimp, thawed, and packaged shredded cabbage (often labeled "angel hair"). Serve the salad for a light lunch or as part of a multicourse meal.
Sunset MARCH 2002
1. Rinse and drain shrimp; pat dry. Cut each in half lengthwise.
2. In a large bowl, mix lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon chili, and garlic. Add shrimp, cabbage, bean sprouts, rau ram, carrots, shallots, and 1/4 cup peanuts; mix. Taste, and add more chili if desired.
3. Pour the salad onto a platter and sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup peanuts over the top.
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