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Fish and Shellfish, Healthy Eating, Salads

Green papaya salad with shrimp (Goi du du)

Green papaya salad with shrimp (Goi du du)
Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times

Ann Le's parents married in 1975, a week before the end of the Vietnam War and three days before they joined relatives in two boats for an uncertain future that led from South Vietnam to a Korean refugee camp, to ... Read more

Time: 40 minutes | Serves 4
  • 1/3 pound large shrimp, cleaned, deveined
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • Juice of 1 small lime
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce (nuoc nam)
  • 1/2 fresh Thai bird chile, finely chopped ( 1/4 teaspoon chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 3 cups julienned green papaya
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Vietnamese coriander leaves, divided
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Thai basil leaves, divided
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped, unsalted dry-roasted peanuts

Step 1Heat a grill pan or grill. Place the shrimp in a bowl. Add the olive oil, salt and pepper and toss to coat. Grill until opaque in the center, about 3 minutes per side. Remove from the grill, cool and slice in half lengthwise.

Step 2In a small bowl, combine the lime juice, garlic, sugar, fish sauce and chopped chile. Whisk until the sugar is dissolved.

Step 3In a small skillet or saucepan, heat the oil. Fry the minced shallots until golden brown. Drain and add to the fish sauce mixture.

Step 4Julienne the papaya or mangoes into thin, matchstick strips 2 inches long until you have 3 cups. Place in a large serving bowl or platter. Pour the dressing all over the strips, evenly coating them. Toss with 2 tablespoons coriander and 2 tablespoons Thai basil.

Step 5Top the dressed papaya with cooked shrimp and garnish with the peanuts, the remaining 2 tablespoons coriander and the remaining 2 tablespoons basil.

Note: Adapted from "The Little Saigon Cookbook" by Ann Le. You can prepare this salad up to an hour before serving, but no longer or the herbs will wilt. Green papayas and Thai basil are available at Asian markets. For 3 cups julienned green papaya, use a portion of 1 small green papaya (about 2 pounds); save the remainder for another use.


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