After all that spice, a cool refreshing salad is called for. I made som tum, a green papaya salad, at the cooking class, but thought to share this glass noodle salad instead, because the ingredients are a little less obscure and so, more re-creatable. I've done it slightly different from the Thai teacher, adjusted according to my own presumptuous interpretations of versions of this salad that I've had before and liked.
Thai Glass Noodle Salad (Yum Woon Sen)
80g glass noodles (otherwise known as cellophane noodles, or mung bean threads)
3 shallots, thinly sliced
2-3 thai bird's eye chilli, chopped finely
handful of bean sprouts
1/2 a carrot, julienned
handful of Thai basil leaves/cilantro/ a mix (mint would be nice too)
1 tbsp dried shrimp
1-2 tbsp fish sauce
1-2 tbsp unrefined cane/palm sugar
1-2 tbsp lime juice
1. Soak glass noodles in cold water for 5 min till soft. Now, let soak in boiling water for 1-2 min to cook it (I add the dried shrimps here too, so they soften a bit, and the noodles absorb a little of the seafood flavour). I also scald the vegetables so they don't taste that raw. Refresh all in cold water.
2. Meanwhile, combine ingredients for dressing. Adjust to taste! You might like it sweeter or tangier or saltier. I also like to add some of the shallots and chilli here to cut the sharpness and also flavour the dressing so the shallot-y spicy flavour can coat all the noodles better later.
3. Pour dressing over all the ingredients and toss.
This couldn't be simpler, but it definitely doesn't compromise on taste nor texture. You've got spicy, sweet, sour and salty, and the smooth slippery glass noodles against the fresh crunchy vegetables. And with the weather so hot (not just in Singapore. I've heard it's really hot in London too, and it's practically a heatwave in the US), whatever gives us all an excuse to not start the stove or oven is good. YUM woon sen (: