Rice Stick Noodle with Caribbean Gremolata
This squash and rice noodle with Caribbean gremolata hits all the right notes: sweet, tart, crisp, and spicy. Julienned squash, zucchini, carrots, and cooked rice noodles are quickly sautéed together with onions and sambal oelek (chili paste). The Caribbean gremolata — made with a combination of crushed garlic, ginger, and minced cilantro — is folded into the mixture just before serving. Top with some chili oil and you’re ready to eat.
This recipe comes from Chef Chris Dancesia, chef and co-owner of Nick’s Bistro in Bradenton, Florida, and the winner of the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Show Meatless Monday Rapid Fire Challenge.
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- 14 oz package of Rice Stick Noodles
- 2 Zucchini
- 2 Yellow Squash
- 1 Carrots
- 1 Red Onion
- 3 Garlic Cloves
- 2” Ginger, peeled
- 2 Limes
- 1 bunch Cilantro
- 2 tbsp Sambal Oelek
- 1 tbsp Coconut Oil
- 2 tbsp Canola Oil
- Chili Oil (Recipe below)
- Salt and Pepper
Cook noodles according to directions on the package. I generally place noodles in a non-reactive mixing bowl for 5-7 minutes. The noodles should be al dente. Strain noodles and coat with canola oil to avoid sticking and transfer to a sheet pan or cookie sheet to cool.
Using a mandolin julienne the (flesh only, no seeds) zucchini, yellow squash, and carrots lengthwise to match the rice stick noodles. Using a chef’s knife, julienne the red onion as thin as possible, not more than 1/8” thick.
Crush and mince the garlic and ginger, transfer to a mixing bowl. Rough chop the cilantro and add to garlic ginger mix. Zest Limes into bowl and mix.
In a large sauté pan over med to medium high heat add 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and 2 tablespoons of canola oil. Stir in Sambal Oelek. Add onions and sweat until translucent. Add carrots and cook until they just start to soften. Add zucchini and yellow squash and cook just until softened.
Add rice stick noodles and mix. Add more canola oil to coat if pan gets too dry (the oil acts as the sauce in this dish).
Fold in gremolata and lime juice (Approximately one lime). Season with salt and pepper. Add more coconut oil if desired. This is where the dish can vary depending on individual palates. The oil should coat the rice stick noodles without being over oily.
Combine 3 tablespoons of Sambal Oelek, 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and 1 cup of canola oil in a sauce pan. Heat over medium heat to incorporate flavors without the oil hitting smoking point. Strain into non-reactive bowl and allow to cool. Once cool, place in a squeeze bottle.
Place pasta on the center of a plate, drizzle chili oil on the plate around the pasta, garnish with a sprig of cilantro and lime wedge if desired.