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Light and Fresh - Southeast Asian- Inspired Chicken and Vermicelli Salad

 I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday spent with family and friends. My husband and I took a two week-long  road trip, visiting both sets of families. It was wonderful to see all of our loved ones, but I am definitely feeling the effects of two weeks of overindulging on rich and heavy foods. Whenever I feel like eating light and healthy, I often make Asian-inspired dishes, particularly Southeast Asian. I love how clean, fresh and flavourful that style of cuisine is. I also think it is extremely visually appealing.  You know what they say - you eat with your eyes first

Southeast Asian- Inspired Chicken and Vermicelli Salad - serves 6 or more
(This salad would be a beautiful dish to bring to a potluck dinner. Add peanuts right before serving.)

8 oz. uncooked thin rice vermicelli noodles, prepared according to package directions (drain noodles when they are slightly undercooked, they will continue to soften in the dressing.)
1 large carrot,  julienned
2 ribs celery, strings removed,  julienned
1/2 red bell pepper, julienned
8 oz. shredded rotisserie chicken
2 oz. shredded cabbage
4 scallions, thinly sliced- save some for garnishing
small handful cilantro, chopped
chopped peanuts, for garnishing
carrot vinaigrette, see below
salt and pepper

In a large bowl, toss all ingredients together, until everything is evenly coated with dressing. Adjust seasoning if needed. Serve cold.

Carrot Vinaigrette:

1 med. carrot, grated
3 Tbsp. rice vinegar
2 tsp. agave nectar
1 - 2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp. toasted sesame oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 -2 tsp. sriracha, or to taste
1/2 cup canola oil
salt and pepper

Mix all ingredients in a blender. Puree until everything is well blended. You will need to scrape down the sides of blender. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Tags: Chicken, Asian, Salad, Pasta

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