Prior to the decision to make the Hawaiian shrimp, I had thought about making Pad Thai this past weekend. I decided to make it last night anyways, and it was a lot of fun. While it may be a pretty basic and popular dish on Thai menus, I found Pad Thai to be something you could really mix up and make easily at home, as long as you have the right ingredients. I used Jaden Hair’s cookbook – she has a great blog called Steamy Kitchen and her cookbook is filled with easy-to-make Asian recipes.
Week: Still 9 f 52
The first step here was to soak the rice noodles in hot water (not boiling) for about 10-15 minutes until they were stiff but flexible. Mine felt good after about 10 minutes, but I think they could have gone a minute or so longer. I was afraid of overcooking them though. At this point in the process, I would compare them to plastic ties.
While the noodles soaked, I started the sauce with store-bought pad thai paste. Jaden recommends starting with this as a base and then building on it, as making the sauce from scratch can go awry due to irregularities in key ingredients. To the paste, I added concentrated tamarind, sugar, fish sauce, water and sriracha.
Once the noodles are soaked and the sauce is ready, it’s a pretty quick process. First you scramble the eggs on high heat in the wok in a bit of high-heat tolerant oil. Once scrambled, the eggs are removed and the wok is wiped clean. After heating more oil, I added chicken, which was not in the cookbook’s shrimp pad thai recipe but I wanted to make a chicken & shrimp version. I let the chicken cook for a couple minutes, and then pushed it to the side and added the shrimp. I did the same with the shrimp and then added scallions and garlic. Soon after, the drained noodles are added, along with the sauce and scrambled egg. Mix all of this together and cover the wok to let the noodles simmer and soak up the sauce for a minute or two. Check the noodles for doneness and serve with chopped peanuts, bean sprouts, and lime wedges.
This is a fun recipe to make at home, and you can play with the sauce and the proteins when you do it on your own. Enjoy!