How to make Nuam M’sua

 by Hannah Warstler

“Ch’nang!” I only know a few words in Khmer, but this one is essential — it means “delicious”!  Cambodian cuisine is characterized by a combination of diverse flavors derived from spices, fresh fruits and vegetables.  Every bite is a swirl of sweet, spicy, savory and sour flavors.  One of my favorite dishes thus far is Nuam M’sua, or shrimp vermicelli noodle salad.  If you’re yearning for a refreshing summer dish that‘s as fitting at an evening barbeque as a lakeside picnic, look no further than this traditional Khmer recipe!

HBW_1000Nuam M’sua is one of over forty recipes featured in the Green Mango Café & Bakery cookbook. The book showcases some of the Green Mango’s western and Asian recipes, as well as the chefs’-in-training favorite Khmer dishes.  Whether you’re into Nuam M’sua, Mango Salsa or Banana Bread French Toast, this book is for you! All proceeds from the cookbook support CGI’s training centers here in Cambodia.

Click here to purchase the Green Mango Cookbook.


For the Salad:
8 oz rice vermicelli or angel hair noodles
HBW-161 lb shrimp — cleaned, deveined and shelled (raw or frozen)
1 ½ T olive oil
4 green onions
2 carrots
3 medium tomatoes
1 red onion
¼ c chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)

For the Dressing
½ c. fresh lime juice (about 6 limes)
¼ c. soy sauce
1 T fish sauce
4 cloves garlic
½ bird’s eye chili (or a red Thai chili)

1. Cook the noodles according to the package instructions, breaking the noodle bundles in half before cooking. When done, rinse the noodles thoroughly with cool water to bring them to room temperature.

2. Finely slice 4 green onions and 2 carrots. Dice 3 tomatoes and 1 red onion. Chop the cilantro.

3. In a skillet, heat 1 ½ tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the shrimp and sauté until pink and tender.

4. For the dressing, mince 4 cloves garlic. Finely slice the bird’s eye chili. In a small bowl, whisk together ½ cup lime juice, ¼ cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon fish sauce, 3 tablespoons sugar, minced garlic, and sliced chili.

In a large bowl, combine noodles, vegetables, shrimp, and dressing. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

WND Tip: For authentic Nuam M’sua, toss in some freshly roasted peanuts! Yum!