Have you ever been inspired by a person, rather than a recipe in the kitchen? There are several people that I aspire to in the kitchen, but most recently, that person is Candice Kumai. I was first drawn to her when my mom and I took her cooking class at the Natural Gourmet Institute in New York in the spring, and ever since then I’ve been following what she’s been up to thanks to my good friend, Instagram.
This month’s Recipe Redux theme is to “grab and book and cook”. We were asked to play a little party game at the end of 2016 by grabbing our nearest cookbook and Redux the recipe on page 201, 16 or 216, or any combination of the number ‘2016’.
I keep a pile of cookbooks in my kitchen and of course, one of my favorites is Clean Green Eats by Candice Kumai. On page 216, she has a recipe for Spicy Shrimp Soba Noodle Salad. I’m so glad I picked this one, since I’ve been needing to test a recipe for a Raw Pad Thai Mason Jar Salad!
I didn’t really follow the recipe, or at all, but instead used it as inspiration behind my recipe for this Raw Pad Thai Mason Jar Salad. I love the Asian influence that Candice brings to her kitchen and would like to incorporate Asian flavors and ingredients into my own cooking more often.
I made this mason jar salad with both soba noodles and kelp noodles. Both were fantastic! If you are looking for a heartier dish, I would opt for the soba noodles. But if you’re looking for something raw (requiring no cooking time) and light, I would go for the kelp noodles. I also included zucchini noodles for an extra layer of fun, but you certainly don’t have to!
So what exactly are kelp noodles?
They are clear, thin noodles made from kelp, a brown seaweed that is high in iodine (good for boosting metabolism and energy!). They really don’t taste like much, but add a nice, crunchy texture to salads or when used as a noodle substitute. They are extremely low in calories and can be found at your local Whole Foods store or Asian market.
I will admit, between the kelp noodles and the zucchini noodles, this salad is a little hard to eat. I would suggest cutting the noodles with scissors to make them more manageable and prevent from dressing flying on your face (not speaking from experience or anything!).
But the flavors are oh so worth any bit of messiness! You know those meals that just make you feel SO HEALTHY afterwards? This is one of those meals. The vibrant veggies and delicious dressing might just have you licking your plate, too.
These Raw Pad Thai Mason Jar Salads can be made ahead of time and stored up to four days in the refrigerator. Now how’s that for an easy work lunch to have on hand! This is the perfect recipe to have around for when the New Year hits and you’re looking to get back to healthy habits after all of those holiday sweets and treats.
Have you ever tried kelp noodles before? Do you have someone who inspires you in the kitchen? Share with me in the comment section below!
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