Thai Rainbow Salad

Earlier this week, a fantastic recipe for Thai BBQ Ribs was shared that makes quick work of things with a make ahead sauce and rub, use of a pressure cooker, and the ability to finish them on the grill or under the broiler. Now, they would be delightful with any number of sides, but I did promise to share my favorite accompaniment: Thai Rainbow Salad.

The combination of tender, sweet, and spicy ribs with this crunchy, peanut-laden, sweet, sour, salty, and spicy chopped salad will have your mouth going on a flavor journey without ever leaving your table! As with the sauce and rub for the ribs, the dressing for this salad can be made in advance and the chopping and assembling of most of the salad (save the peanuts for adding just before serving along with the dressing) can be done up to 24 hours in advance. Just store your chopped veggies covered in the fridge.

I like to serve this meal, complete with the ribs, with Thai iced tea or a delightfully cold beer. Summer eating is about enjoying eating from the grill, garden, and giving your mouth a culinary tour of the world. This combo is one of my favorite ways of doing just that!

Thai Rainbow Salad

For the dressing:
  • ¼ c. creamy peanut butter
  • 3 T. lime juice
  • 2 T. soy sauce
  • 1 T. maple syrup or honey
  • 1 T. rice vinegar
  • 1 T. toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. fresh grated ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper, optional
  • 2 T. warm water for thinning dressing
For the Salad:
  • 1 (15 oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3 c. finely chopped rainbow chard
  • 2 c. chopped spinach
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • ½ c. sliced radishes
  • ¼ c. chopped green onion
  • ½ c. fresh chopped cilantro
  • ¼ c. chopped roasted peanuts

To make the dressing, combine all of the ingredients except the warm water in a resealable glass jar. Shake vigorously to combine and add enough of the warm water to thin the dressing to suit your tastes. Set aside.

To assemble the salad, combine all of the ingredients in a large, shallow bowl. Add the dressing and toss well to coat. If you are not going to be serving the salad immediately, wait until ready to serve to add the chopped peanuts and dressing until ready to serve.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 15 minutes

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