Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Asian Vegetable and Pasta Salad

Asian Vegetable and Pasta Salad
8 ounces packaged dried pasta (such as vermicelli, angel hair, rotini, or bow tie)
8 ounces fresh asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (1 cup)
1/3 cup bottled plum sauce
2 tablespoons water
1 to 2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 medium red or green sweet pepper, cut into bite-size strips
1 11-ounce can mandarin orange sections, drained
1 cup fresh or frozen sugar snap peas, halved crosswise
1/3 cup sliced green onions
1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1. Cook pasta according to package directions, adding asparagus the last 5 minutes of cooking. Rinse well under cold running water; drain thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.
2. For dressing, in a small mixing bowl stir together plum sauce, water, soy sauce, sesame oil, and crushed red pepper.
3. In a large bowl combine pasta mixture, sweet pepper, oranges, sugar snap peas, green onions, and almonds. Add dressing; toss to coat. Serve immediately. Makes 8 to 10 side-dish servings.

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