If you’re looking for a salad that deviates from traditional North American cuisine, here’s one from Asian cuisine for a change of pace.
This recipe arrives courtesy of Old Bird (3950 Main Street), which Vancouver’s Chinese Restaurant Awards named as one of four Game Changers in 2021, or restaurants that opened during the pandemic and have impressed with their level of quality.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Yield: serves two
1 cup rehydrated wood ear mushroom (soak dried wood ear mushroom in lukewarm water for 20 to 40 minutes until fully bloomed)
1 cup cucumber, seeded and cut on the bias
1 teaspoon of salt
1/4 cup red bell pepper, cut into sticks
1/4 cup red onion, cut into thin slices
5 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon of chopped cilantro
2 teaspoons of sugar
1 tablespoon of sesame oil
2 tablespoons of soy or tamari sauce
1 tablespoon of rice vinegar
1 garlic clove, minced
Old Bird Pepper Oil — As You Like
In a medium-sized saucepan, boil 1 liter of water, then add the rehydrated wood mushroom. Boil for 3-4 minutes.
Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside to let the mushroom dry as much as possible. Remove all the thick parts.
In a bowl, combine the sliced cucumber and 1 teaspoon of salt.
Set aside, the salt will remove excess moisture from the cucumbers. Let sit for 10 minutes, then dry the cucumber with a paper towel.
For the dressing, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together.
Add all the ingredients together and mix well.
Reserve the salad in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
Place salad on a rimmed plate and drizzle with Old Bird chili oil.