East — West Shredded Salad


Raw or almost raw vegetables are enjoyed in most countries, both East and West, but not in Asia, and particularly not in China where they are usually at least stir-fried, blanched or pickled. I enjoy raw vegetables, thus showing my Western culinary influences, but I understand the Chinese preference also. Hence, this East-West compromise: delicious, fresh raw vegetables covered with a heated zesty Chinese-inspired sauce that coats the salad. The result pleases both eye and palate, and creates a refreshing salad for any meal.


  • 100 g (4 oz) carrots
  • 25 g (1 oz) fresh chillies (optional)
  • 4 spring onions
  • 225 g (8 oz) iceberg lettuce
  • 50 g (2 oz) bean sprouts


  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 dried chillies, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped spring onions
  • ½ teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns, roasted and ground
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese white rice
  • vinegar or cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons oil, preferably groundnut
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil


Peel and cut the carrots into 5 cm (2 in) fine shreds. Cut the chillies, spring onions and lettuce into 5 cm (2 in) fine shreds. In a large bowl, mix all the vegetables together.

Combine all the dressing ingredients, except the oils, in a heatproof bowl. Heat the oil in a small saucepan or wok until almost smoking. Pour the hot oils over the dressing ingredients and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss thoroughly. Serve at once.