First make the dressing. Put the green and red chillies, the sugar,
the fish sauce and the rice vinegar into a saucepan. Set over a high
heat and bring to the boil. Boil for one minute, then remove from the
heat and set aside to cool to room temperature. Stir in the lime or
lemon juice and set aside.
Halve the baby cabbages vertically and cut a triangular notch to
remove the white stalky bits. Using a mandolin or a razor-sharp knife,
cut the cabbage into very fine shreds. Make a stack of peas and cut
them, on a sharp diagonal, into fine slices. Put the cabbage, the peas
and the coriander into a salad bowl and toss well.
Ten minutes before you serve the salad, heat the oil in a small
saucepan. Put a few pieces of absorbent kitchen paper on a plate. When
the oil is good and hot roughly crumble the block of noodles into the
oil, and fry for 30 seconds or two, or until just beginning to change colour. (**see important note, below)
Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon, shake well, and tip onto the
kitchen paper to drain. Now put the peanuts into the hot oil and fry
for about 30 seconds and then remove, before they change colour, and
drain on the kitchen paper.
Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well. Scatter the hot,
crispy noodles and peanuts over the salad, and serve immediately.
Reprinted with the permission of "Scrumptious South Africa". Visit "Scrumptious South Africa" here for more recipes.