Ever since I first spotted this recipe on the blog A Beautiful Bite, I’ve been dying to make it. Melanie actually calls her salad “Crunchy Polynesian Salad.” The salad isn’t terribly sophisticated, but it sounded fun and different. I love her unique, crunchy additions – toasted ramen noodles and macadamia nuts!
I made this salad for a July 4th get-together. Because it was for a significant family-friend gathering, I made a very large salad and a voluminous amount of dressing. But I’ve pared it all back to a more normal amount for this post. Or check out Melanie’s original recipe here, which serves eight people.
8 ounces shredded iceberg lettuce
8 ounces broccoli slaw
8 ounces julienned carrots
8 ounces shredded purple cabbage
1 – 16 ounce can pineapple slices in juice
Coconut oil or Pam
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 small purple onion, diced
Toasted ramen noodles
Macadamia nut pieces, toasted
Place the first four ingredients in a large bowl lined with paper towels to insure that the vegetables are dry. I don’t like excessive moisture in salads because it dilutes the dressing.
Store the bowl in the refrigerator overnight or at least for a few hours.
Drain the pineapple slices over a bowl and save the juice for the dressing. Dry the slices on paper towels.
Spray a griddle with coconut oil, and grill the pineapple slices until grill marks are obvious. Continue with all of the pineapple you’re using, then cut each slice into quarters.
If you need to save on time, you can cut up the red bell peppers, but I would place them in a sealable bag or bowl also lined with paper towels. I never cut up onions ahead of time.
Toast the macadamia nuts in a large skillet, and let them cool completely.
There’s some preparation to this salad, but trust me, it’s all worth it!
1/2 cup pineapple juice
Juice of 2 limes
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
4 teaspoons sesame seed oil
1″ piece ginger, coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic
Place all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
Then add an equal amount of olive oil or peanut oil.
On the day you are serving the salad, bring all of the different salad elements to room temperature, including the dressing.
Remove the paper towels, and toss the salad ingredients with the pineapple and red bell pepper.
Chop the onion and add it to the salad along with the cilantro. Right before serving, add the dressing and toss well.
If you’re serving the salad buffet style, mix in the ramen noodles and nuts at the very last minute so they stay crunchy. This is what I used because I couldn’t find ramen noodles. You might be shocked but I’ve never bought them before.
This salad is truly a fabulous summer salad, and great for entertaining.
You can change up the ingredients of the main salad. It can be all cabbage, or more lettuces, whatever you like.
If you can’t find macadamia nuts, you could use peanuts or almonds, toasted, of course.
It would also be a really good salad with grilled chicken or salmon!!!
note: I would have used a fresh pineapple if I could have found one. But the pineapple that’s canned with juice and not heavy syrup worked out well.