Cold Noodle Salad

by Anh-Minh on August 7, 2015


When the temperatures get above 80 degrees, I’m tempted to eat ice cream for dinner. So I was thrilled when Melina Hammer told me what her next guest recipe for Anthology would: a cold noodle salad with a kick and a crunch to it. Yum. —Anh-Minh

While this seriously tasty preparation takes cues from Asian flavors, this isn’t explicitly from a particular culture. Though it isn’t a saucy pasta dish by any means, don’t let the apparent simplicity fool you—this dish is packed with flavor.

I made this using somen noodles, shiitake mushrooms, royal burgundy beans, slivered jalapeño, cucumber, Chinese chives, pickled red bell pepper, mint, and cilantro. My choices here serve as a guideline—pictured is an array of possible elements you can incorporate. My hope is that in sharing this as a guideline, it inspires you to play. Experiment with the type of noodles, as well as the pickled and spicy elements. Definitely swap crunchy veg variations to see which harmonize together.

If you have a few pantry staples—the sauces and vinegar, and pasta—you can make this virtually no-cook recipe without notice. It is a mix-and-match, pull-from-what-you-have kind of thing. And the best part? This dish makes for a beautiful presentation and a really satisfying meal for whomever you serve it.

Cold Noodle Salad

Serves 4-6

for the noodles

  • 1 pkg noodles, cooked according to the directions on the label
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2 tbsp good olive oil
  • 2 tsp fish sauce
  • ½-1 tsp soy sauce
  • ½-1 tsp rice wine vinegar


choose one, 2-3 tbsp, divided—finely chop whichever you choose

  • Chinese chives
  • garlic scapes
  • spring onion
  • chives
  • garlic


a few handfuls total, a mixture of two or three

  • green beans, royal burgundy beans, etc.
  • kirby or Persian cucumbers
  • sweet bell pepper
  • asparagus
  • snap peas
  • green papaya or mango
  • hakurei turnips


choose one, 1-2 cups

  • mushrooms (any of these is great): button, shiitake, cremini, king trumpet
  • poached or sautéed fish flaked into pieces, such as salmon or mackerel
  • poached or sautéed shredded chicken
  • cubed and roasted tofu
  • cooked chickpeas

spicy or pickled

choose two, 2 tbsp (unless you like spicy, then add more)—very thinly sliced

  • pickled shallots, onions, peppers, radishes, carrots, summer squash, ginger, cornichons, etc.*
  • sriracha
  • jalapeño, very thinly sliced or chopped
  • spicy Japanese yuzu condiment

fresh herbs for garnish

choose two, 1 small handful per serving

  • cilantro
  • mint
  • parsley
  • basil

*Store-bought pickle variations work great in a pinch. However, if you make your own pickles, here’s a delicious and fun place to incorporate them.


  1. Cook the pasta and drain. Transfer noodles to a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Use tongs to turn pasta, ensuring all strands get a light coat of oil. Once the noodles have cooled enough to touch, add the fish sauce, soy sauce, and lime juice, and use your hands to gently separate any remaining clumps. Taste and adjust soy (salty), vinegar (tangy), or fish sauce (savory) to suit your taste. Refrigerate at least a half hour, up to overnight. If you refrigerate overnight, cover in cellophane.
  2. For whichever crunchy elements you chose, chop them. If you chose cucumber as one of your veg, peel the skin if it is tough, or if the cucumber isn’t organic. If you were lucky enough to score kirbys or Persian cukes, their seeds are small and you can leave them intact. Otherwise, scrape seeds out with a spoon.
  3. Chop the beans into thin cross-sections—little bursts of assertive crunch! I got royal burgundy beans a local farmer friend grew. Basically if you can find any snap-fresh bean, then you won’t need to cook them. Ask if you can taste one: It shouldn’t be fibrous or tough to chew.
  4. Choose an allium—a little goes a long way. Chop it finely and reserve a little for table-side garnishing.
  5. Trim mushroom stems and halve or quarter any larger ones. Sauté mushrooms in a little olive oil, on medium-high heat in a cast-iron or enameled skillet until tender—about 5 minutes—adding a small amount of water (or broth, should you have some on hand) to keep them juicy. Transfer cooked mushrooms to a bowl and toss together with all the above chopped elements once mushrooms have cooled a bit.
  6. On a mandoline, shave jalapeño or ginger (etc.), and add to the mix. If you have pickled veg, chop them as you did the beans and add them in. I sometimes add a little of the brine liquid for added punch. It’s up to you.
  7. To serve, transfer noodles to a serving platter. I created little piles by coiling the noodles around my hand. Do what fits you in the moment. Scatter the crunchy-peppery-meaty mixture onto the piles, leaving a little extra aside for serving. Additional chopped allium is nice table side, too.
  8. With a final flourish, add the fresh herbs to top. Enjoy!

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{ Recipe and photos by Melina Hammer for Anthology Magazine }

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Maison Monade Masks

by Anh-Minh on August 6, 2015

mm_02I’ve got a couple of walls in my home that are decorated with art that is hung salon-style. Among the paintings, prints, and etchings, I like to display works that inject different shapes and textures to the overall arrangement. And if these objects also bring a smile to my face? Even better.

Which is why I’ve currently got my eye on these ceramic masks by Maison Monade. Each clay piece is handmade-to-order in Brooklyn, and comes with its own wonderful personality.

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{ Images from Maison Monade }


Issue20_Cover-loresWe’ve reached another milestone release here—the big 2-0! We’re busy getting Issue No. 20/Summer 2015 shipped out to subscribers and stores as quickly as possible. The theme for our latest edition is “Print & Pattern,” and it includes some stunning homes (like the one gracing the cover, shot by Laure Joliet), as well as an array of talented artists and designers. Oh, and you definitely don’t want to miss the travel story on Lisbon. We can’t stop daydreaming about the beautiful tiles found all over the capital city of Portugal.

This is just a sampling of the content we have in store for you with Issue No. 20. We hope you enjoy the magazine once it does land in your mailbox or on your local stockist’s shelves.

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melanieabrantesYou’ve seen them in magazines and on blogs: an assemblage of beautifully crafted everyday items that when arranged just right, make for an exquisite display in a home. Personally, I’ve been considering starting a collection of wooden spoons, but I just haven’t come across the spoon to kick off my new collection.

Well, thanks to Melanie Abrantes spoon-carving kit, I can actually make that spoon myself. Which is kind of exciting to think about, and may be just the thing to get my collection going. The kit includes a hardwood spoon blank (you choose from poplar, cherry, walnut, or mahogany), a Japanese spoon gouge, a Mikikicha carving knife, handwritten instructions (charming!) … and even a band-aid (ha). Oakland-based Abrantes also sells individual blanks—perfect if you get hooked on the craft and want to make an entire collection. (That’s probably going to be me.)

I’m also super tempted to snap up one of Abrantes’ great designs, like her wood-and-cork candlesticks or cork bowl with rope handles.

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{ Images via Melanie Abrantes }


The Greenbrier

by Anh-Minh on July 6, 2015

greenbrier7While I’m not a golf fanatic, I do occasionally follow the sport, and this past weekend marked The Greenbrier Classic, an annual tournament held at the West Virginia resort. Some people are drawn to The Greenbrier for its golf and tennis amenities … and others, like me, to its decor, which can be traced back to Dorothy Draper. The noted interior designer “left the hotel with a bold new personality, using color and oversized patterns to paint a picture that reflected the luxury of space, elegance, and sense of history in every detail.” (You can read more about her firm’s relationship with the resort here.)

The aesthetic might not work with the architecture of my own home, but I would love to spend a long weekend in one of these rooms and admire the talents of Draper as well as her protégé, Carleton Varney.

greenbrier_top greenbrier_middle greenbrier_bottom    { Photos via The Greenbrier }