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It’s been nonstop days of cold & wind, hearty soups, & carbs. I’m really craving for a dish that evokes the warm shores ahead (like a beach in Phu Quoc or ANY warm sandy beach right now is good too). I saw what looks like a grapefruit on steroids at an Asian grocery & knew exactly what to do. This grand daddy of citrus fruit can grow up to the size of a basketball from what I’ve heard. It’s less acidic than most citrus fruit & sweeter than a grapefruit but not as sweet as an orange. Get it?  

Pomelo originated in South East Asia. You’ll see bounties of pomelos all over Vietnam & a popular dish called goi buoi (pomelo salad) can be seen at most restaurants & household. Everyone have their own way of making it & often with shrimp added to it. There’s no right way in making pomelo salad. Let your imagination go wild. You can opt out of a salad & eat it like we did growing up by just dipping the pomelo chunks in salt & black pepper mix & nosh on it as a snack. They’re just as good on their own.

I’m going to enjoy my personal expression of it with napa cabbage, carrots, red onions, herbs, and peanut sprinkles to give a textural contrast to the delicate juicy pomelo. Dressing it in soy vinaigrette takes the salad to a bold direction. Eating this bold & zesty pomelo salad will transport me to the warm sun & sandy beach or at least get my body in shape for it. It’s really delicious & refreshing to eat! 

INGREDIENTS

For the salad:
1 medium-large size pomelo
1 1/4 cup napa cabbage, finely shredded 
1/2 cup carrots, shredded
1/8 cup cilantro, leaves only
1 tbs mint (leaves only), chiffonade
1 tbs Thai basil (leaves only), chiffonade
1/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 a red jalapenos, thinly sliced

For the garnish:
2 tbs lightly toasted chopped peanuts
1 tbs crushed peanuts
1 tsp lightly toasted sesame seeds (optional)

For the vinaigrette:
3 tbs lime juice
3 tbs vegetarian fish sauce
1 tsp tamari
1 tsp sugar
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Thai chili, chopped (optional)

METHOD

For the vinaigrette:
In a small mixing bowl, combine the lime juice, sugar, & vegetarian fish sauce. Stir well dissolving the sugar. Add in tamari, minced garlic, & Thai chili. Stir & mix well. Set aside.
For the garnish:
In a skillet over medium high heat, lightly toast the peanut till it’s fragrant & turn slightly brown. Transfer to a bowl & set aside. In the same skillet, lightly toast the sesame the same way & transfer to a bowl & set aside. Crushed a tbs of roasted peanuts & set aside.
For the pomelo salad:
Soak the thinly sliced red onion in 1 tbs rice vinegar for 15 minutes. Remove & set aside. Peel the outer rind & pith of the pomelo. Remove the pulp from the opaque skin of each pomelo wedge. Break pulp into chunks. In a large bowl, add in the napa cabbage, carrots, pomelo chunks, herbs, jalapenos, & red onions. Pour in 2 tbs of soy vinaigrette & tossed gently making sure salad is fully coated with the vinagrette. Taste & add more as needed to your liking. Add in the toasted chopped peanuts & toasted sesame seeds. Toss well & set aside.
ASSEMBLE & SERVE:
Mound the pomelo salad on each individual plate. Sprinkle the crushed peanuts on top & serve.