Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad, Yum Woon Sen

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 9

Yum Woon Sen, or Cellophane Noodle Salad, is the “requested menu” this week! I’m surprised, because I thought instead it would be a complicated dish that you can’t figure out how to make, not one so basic to me. I normally don’t even take a picture of this dish and post it on Facebook or Instagram if I make it. It’s like taking a picture of a house salad, you know. Zero excitement for the viewer…OK, ok, maybe the Thai viewer!

When we’re talking about Thai Salad, I can think of four different Thai names for the creation: Larb, Yum, Tam and Phla. I already blogged about Larb in my previous post “Larb : Spicy Meat Salad“. This time will be the “Yam”. Do you know which ingredient that you can’t not put in these dishes? The hint is: the ingredient is from a plant, and I can’t eat them. Chili, that is. As a Thai girl, I’m ashamed to let the world know that I’m allergic to chili, especially Bird Chili,  Bird’s Eye Chili, Thai pepper or the Thai pronunciation is “Prik Kee Nhoo”, meaning Rat’s feces chili (Prik=Chili, Kee=feces, Nhoo=rat)  Such an unpleasant name, but not as unpleasant as actually eating it, for me.

“Yum” is a common name used with most salads that contain more vegetables than meat and do not contain lemongrass. Thai salads with lemongrass are usually called “Phla”. Other than that you have freedom of ingredients for the Yum. The taste of all Thai salads (other than spicy hot from chili) will lead with sourness, follow with saltiness–mostly with fish sauce not salt–and finish with sweetness. Yes, you don’t make a salad all sweet. We eat dessert at the end of the meal too, you know.

The main ingredient this time is the Cellophane noodle made from mung bean starch. You are very welcome to use other kinds too. I show you my ingredients but you do not need to stick to them. It’s just an example. If you don’t eat pork, substitute with beef, chicken, lamb or duck. You won’t hurt my feelings or change the course of history in Thailand, so go ahead. Same with shrimp. You can use them or substitute them with other meat, or just completely omit them.

Most “Yum Woon Sen” recipes would tell you to add peanuts. I normally do too, but not this time. I just remembered them when I walked back in to the kitchen after we finished eating the salad and saw the peanut container sitting there on the counter. It would be too late to add them after everyone was full, right.? Also, my husband confessed that he already lined his stomach with some peanuts before the meal, so he was fine.

Ingredients

The amount of each ingredient is just approximate. You can add or subtract as you prefer.

Cellophane noodles  2 small bunch soak in water

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 6

Shrimp  1/2 cup cut lengthwise (see picture in Pad Thai)

Ground pork   1/4 cup

Roasted peanuts  1/2 cup

Tomatoes cut in to small pieces  1/2 cup

Mushrooms  1 pack of fresh Mitake mushrooms 8oz. (You can use a different type of mushroom. The Thai would use Jew’s ear mushrooms.)

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 3 (1)

Vietnamese Sausage 1/4 cup cut into 1”x3/8”x3/8” pieces (optional)

Firm Tofu 1/4 cup cut into small pieces 1/2”x1/4”x1/4”,  fried  in oil until crispy

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 1

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 8 (1)

Shredded carrots  1/4 cup

Onion, thinly sliced   2 tablespoons

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 4 (1)

Cilantro, pick only the leaves   1/2 cup (save the stems)

2 Green onions cut to 1/4”-1/2” long

Fresh Chili (I didn’t use this but you can) as much as you prefer

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 1 (1)

Ingredients for the dressing

Garlic  2 cloves

Cilantro root  1 root (you can substitute with a bunch of cilantro stems)

Pickled Garlic  1 small head, cut all the cloves out (optional)

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 4

Fish sauce  1/4 cup

White vinegar  1/4 cup

Brown Sugar 1/4 cup

(You can also add chili here too)

Method

1) Make the dressing first. You can either use a mortar and pestle like I did or chop up the ingredients using a knife or use the blender; all up to you. The goal is to make all the ingredients blend as much as possible. Then you boil it over medium heat on the stove to eliminate all the vinegar stink. Let it cool down before you toss it into the salad.

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 5

2) Boil water in a pot and cook the ground pork. Use a small, fine-mesh strainer to hold the ground pork and dip it in the boiling water to cook. This way you can control how long it cooks and can break the ground pork in small pieces.

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 2

Cook the shrimp in the same boiling water, then cook the Vietnamese sausage

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 7 (1)

and mushrooms.

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 6 (1)

Let everything stand to cool.

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 3

3) Cook the cellophane noodles in the same pot of boiling water. This way the noodles will absorb all the yummy flavors of the other ingredients . Cook until the noodles are clear. Rinse them under cold water.

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 5 (1)

4) Mix everything together and taste it first before adjusting to taste to your preference. You can use lime juice instead of vinegar here.

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 7

Note: You can use lime juice for sour taste for most “Yum” salads, including this dish.

More Notes : If you have the leftover, wrap them in the rice paper and make the fresh spring roll or wrap them in the egg roll wrapper and fried them. You will have the delicious fried spring rolls appetizer for the next meal.

Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad - Yum Woon Sen by The High Heel Gourmet 2 (1)

17 thoughts on “Thai Style Cellophane Noodles Salad, Yum Woon Sen

  1. I love Thai food, thank you for the wonderful recipes and great pictures. I would love to know who to make Pad See Ew (I hope I spelled that correct). My children love it, and so do I. It is a dish I can order that is not too spicy for the kids.

  2. Thanks for liking my first blog post! I’m also a shorty although usually found in flats regardless. This recipe looks great and I’d love to try it out soon, thai foods are some of my favorite to cook and eat!

    • Thanks! Try cooking it! I hope you can find all the ingredients. You can post the picture on my facebook page or your blog 😉 I’m following it now. Your blog make me miss Australia. I was just there over Christmas and New Year.

      • I hope so too! Ingredients can be rather difficult to come by in this little town of Germany! I will definitely let you know if I make it! The weather might be a bit cold for it now, but definitely when it gets warmer! I’m so jealous you were in Australia a few months ago! I miss it so much! And thanks for following my blog! I’ll be following yours too! Hopefully we can encourage each other’s love of food and cooking! (And I love that you cook in high heels. I contemplated it to make me feel all posh and fancy but they’re just too uncomfortable! =p)

    • lol…I like your left over thing for the Turkey too. The “bomb potpie” that actually was a popovers I saw on your blog. Yummy…I have to admit that I never put the turkey left over from your recipe on top but I used your popovers recipe and topped it with my “Thai Massaman curry”…lol.

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