There's so much flavour to this salad from the tart grapefruit to the fragrant lemongrass, the fried shallots and salty anchovies.




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  • 200 g dried mung bean noodles (glass noodles) soaked in hot water until transparent, drained
  • 1 Lebanese cucumber, cut on the diagonal into half moons
  • 1 grapefruit, segmented  
  • 2-3 red chillies, thinly sliced
  • ½ red onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ bunch coriander, leaves picked, roots and stems reserved
  • ½ bunch Vietnamese mint or mint leaves, leaves picked
  • handful shiso leaves
  • crispy fried shallots and ikan bilis (fried anchovies), to garnish


  • ½ tsp whole black peppercorn
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 6 coriander roots
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, pale end only, finely chopped
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) lime juice
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp coconut sugar or grated palm sugar
  • salt, to taste

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


  1. Place the noodles in a large bowl and pour over enough hot water to cover. Stand for 5–10 minutes or until tender and translucent, then drain.
  2. Meanwhile, for the dressing, place the peppercorns, garlic, coriander roots and lemongrass in a mortar and pound with a pestle into a coarse paste. Place the remaining dressing ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well combined and the sugar has dissolved. Add the lemongrass paste and stir until well combined.
  3. Place cooked noodles, cucumber, grapefruit segments, chilli, onion and herbs in a bowl. Add a small handful of fried anchovies and crispy shallots. Pour over the dressing and toss to coat well, then serve, scattered with a few extra fried anchovies and crispy shallots.


Adam Liaw cooks, laughs, and explores culture with some of Australia's most beloved in The Cook Up With Adam Liaw.

Photography by Danielle Abou Karam.