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Salads

Gaijin salad

Gaijin salad
Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times

Dear SOS: I recently went to Gaijin Noodle and Sake House in San Diego, and it was so good. I enjoyed all the food I had there but loved the Gaijin salad. It had an amazing pickled ginger wasabi dressing. ... Read more

Total time: 25 minutes | Serves 4

Wasabi ginger salad dressing

  • 1/4 cup cup rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup oil, preferably a canola and olive oil blend
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon sliced shallot
  • 2 tablespoons pickled ginger
  • 1 tablespoon wasabi paste
  • 2 tablespoons sliced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

Step 1In the bowl of a blender, combine the vinegar, oil, garlic, shallot, pickled ginger, wasabi paste, fresh ginger, sesame oil and lemon juice. Blend until the dressing is smooth and emulsified. The flavor of the dressing can vary depending on the brand of pickled ginger and wasabi paste, as well as the freshness of the other ingredients; taste and adjust the flavorings and seasonings as desired. This makes 1 cup dressing, more than is needed for the remainder of the recipe; the dressing will keep, covered and refrigerated, up to 1 week.

Gaijin salad

  • 2 heads Little Gem lettuce, chopped (or tender hearts of butter lettuce)
  • 2 1/2 cups sugar snap peas, thinly sliced on the bias
  • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced into lengthwise strips
  • 2 1/2 cups enoki mushrooms, trimmed into 1½-inch pieces
  • 6 to 8 tablespoons wasabi ginger dressing, or as desired
  • Scant 1 cup wasabi peas

Step 1In a large bowl, combine the chopped lettuce, sugar snap peas, red onion, mushrooms, wasabi peas and enough dressing to coat. Gently toss the salad, then divide it among four chilled plates and garnish with the wasabi peas. Serve immediately.

Note: Adapted from Gaijin Noodle and Sake House in San Diego.

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