Have you ever had that yummy Asian cabbage salad that has crumbled, uncooked Ramen noodles tossed in it? Oh it is so, so good. I used love that stuff, but it really isn't very healthy. Ramen noodles are fried, and the seasoning packet contains a *lot* of salt (and is used in the dressing for the traditional Ramen salad). So I set out to make a healthier, lower carb, yet yummy version.
Well, I didn't actually *set out* to do that. At least not until I realized that the gigantic bag of "Organic White Chard" I had purchased at the Farmer's Market was not actually chard. At first I was oblivious: "Look at my big head of chard! Isn't it cool? I never saw chard this big before!"
Then I started cutting it apart and tossing the leaves in the sink to wash them, and I looked and said, "Wait, what the heck IS this thing??"
I thought I knew my veggies, but I guess not. I had to Google it. And it turns out it is one gigantic, monstrous Napa cabbage. Napa cabbage is a variety of Chinese cabbage. Well, I had this recipe for sauteed chard all ready and finding out I did not, in fact, have chard threw my dinner plans for a loop. I wasn't sure what to do with this stuff. I was kind of annoyed. And then I remembered... Ramen Salad.
I knew I could not make the old recipe that is full of fried noodles, oils, sugar, and salt. So here's what I did. I played around with the old recipe ingredients to get something *very* close, and *very* good! I think you'll like it! I did not measure, so you kind of have to wing it a bit, but here's the basic recipe.
First, I washed and chopped some of the Napa cabbage and tossed it in a bowl. Just chop as much as you want to eat. I used 2 or 3 cups.
Then, I cut a few slices of sweet onion and minced them and tossed that in. I think sliced green onions/scallions would be even better in this salad, but I didn't have any. I added about 1-2 Tbsp of minced onion.
Next, the dressing. I drizzled a little bit of low sodium soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, and rice wine vinegar into the greens. I used less than a teaspoon of each... and maybe only 1/4 tsp of the oil. I added a bit of olive oil, maybe a teaspoon. I added a sprinkle of black pepper and tossed it well.
Then, it needed some crunch. My old recipe uses sliced almonds, so I put some of those in (a tablespoon or so). And finally, it needed something to sub for the salty, crunchy, yummy Ramen noodles. So I added roasted, salted pepitas. They are the little green seeds from inside a pumpkin (with no hull) and they are so good for you! I just tossed in a sprinkle of those... maybe a half tablespoon.
I tossed it again, tasted it, and oh is it good!
(Notice there is not much left in the bowl when I remembered to take a picture! It was that good!)
You can adjust the dressing to your taste. I had a little bit left in the bottom of the bowl, so I did not even consume all of the dressing. I am looking forward to making an even BIGGER bowl of this salad tomorrow!
This would be excellent as a nice light summer meal with some cold cubed chicken breast tossed in as well.
Hope you like it!