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Thai Noodle Salad for a Crowd

24 7- to 8-oz. Servings

This a healthy dish that can be served at room temperature which makes it great when serving for a crowd. Notice that it is sized for 24 servings. You can reduce by 1/3 if making for a family or as a pot-luck contribution. This recipe was adapted from the cookbook Moosewood Restaurant Cooks for a Crowd.

Preparation and Cooking Time: 1 hour


Linguine3 lbs.
Seasoned Tofu
Tofu2 lbs.
Soy sauce1/4 cup
Water1/4 cup
Five-Spice powder1/4 tsp.
Star anise (optional)3 stars
Basil, fresh, minced3/4 cup
Cilantro, fresh, mince3/4 cup
Spearmint, fresh3/4 cup
Ginger root, fresh, grated1/3 cup
Garlic, pressed or fine mince8 med. cloves or 2 Tbsp.
Salt1 Tbsp.
Lime juice, fresh1/2 cup
Coconut milk, unsweetened28 oz.
Sesame oil, dark3/4 cup
Scallions, green and white parts, chopped (optional)1 cup
Pick a combination of vegetables to total 1 1/2 gallons
Carrots, julienned
Red, Orange or Yellow peppers, thinly sliced
Snow or snap peas, stemmed
Peanuts, roasted, coarsely chopped2 cups
Lime wedges4 limes
Cilantro, fresh, chopped1 1/2 cups
Mung bean sprouts8 oz.


  1. To prepare the seasoned tofu, begin by pressing the tofu by placing the cakes between two plates or baking sheets and balancing a weight (e.g., a heavy book or a stack of plates) on top of the plate for at least 20 minutes. Drain. Pressing excess water from tofu allows it to absorb flavorings more intensely. Then cut each pressed cake in half, horizontally, to yield 2 slices per cake. Arrange the tofu in a single layer in a baking pan. Whisk together the remaining ingredients and pour over the tofu. Bake at 350 for 1 hour, turning the tofu once after 30 minutes. Refrigerated seasoned tofu will keep for up to 5 days so this can be prepared ahead of time.
  2. Cook the linguine until al dente. Drain and toss with 3-4 Tbsp. of vegetable or dark sesame oil to keep the pasta from sticking together. Chill well.
  3. Whisk together the sauce ingredients and set aside.
  4. Blanch vegetables until barely tender. Plunge each vegetable immediately into cold water and drain.
  5. Combine the noodles, sauce, and vegetables. Refrigerate until cool and serve promptly to prevent the noodles from overly absorbing the seasonings and diluting the flavor. Adjust seasonings if necessary. Garnish each plate with one or more of the optional toppings.

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