Asian Ramen Salad

This chile pepper gets its name from its origin. In Spanish, serrano is an adjective meaning “from the mountains” which is where it originated-in the mountains of Hildalgo, Mexico. The serrano is normally about twice as hot as Jalapeno (about 10,000 to 15,000 Scoville units). It is the second most popular chile pepper in Mexico. This chile is used mostly for salsas but can also be used in soups, sauces, chili or stews. Try these as a hotter substitute for Jalapeno.

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For the salad:
2 cups chopped kale
3 cups finely shredded green cabbage
1 cup chopped cilantro
2 packages ramen noodles, seasoning discarded or saved for another use
1 1/2 cup sliced almonds (I use a 6-ounce bag which is about the same)
1 handful sesame seeds (about a tablespoon or two)
2 green onions, chopped
1 serrano pepper, very thinly sliced (optional)

For the dressing:
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 teaspoon Truvia Baking Blend (or a tablespoon and a half of sugar)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger (or to taste)
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons sesame oil


Preheat oven to 300F.

Mix together all dressing ingredients. Set aside.

While still in package, crush noodles into small pieces. Place crushed noodles on baking sheet along with almonds and sesame seeds; gently toss with your hands. Toast in oven until lightly browned, about 10 minutes or so. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Place remaining salad ingredients into a large serving bowl and gently toss. Add ramen noodle mixture and toss again. Pour dressing over and thoroughly toss. Allow to sit for about an hour for flavors to blend, then serve.