Friday, July 4, 2008

Pad Thai and a Craving Satisfied!

I bet you heard that big happy burp! I had a craving for Pad Thai from the moment the crushed peanuts and chili sauce met in this Stir Fried Tofu. I couldn't leave the craving unsatisfied any longer, not while I had most of the ingredients ready.

I don't remember exactly where I heard or read this, but the gist of it is "to confirm if a Thai restaurant serves good food or not is to first taste their Pad Thai". If you cannot stand the Pad Thai it is a good idea to stay away from there. So applying the same standards to my kitchen, I need to cook a good Pad Thai before I can move on to other Thai dishes don't you think? Well I think I passed that test, the Pad Thai was indeed a big hit. I am not sure why I had procrastinated this long to cook it.

I loosely based the recipe on the Global Gourmet Pad Thai and Chez Pim's, Pad Thai for beginners. Chez Pim's especially is a treasure house of information on the subject. One noted exception was I did not add bean sprouts and Tofu. I have seen bean sprouts in my local grocery store, but I could not find them there when I needed them most and I was late heading home so did not stop at my local Asian store. I know what you are thinking my friends, why couldn't I have sprouted them at home, well I have a reason for that too - could not wait a day longer, my patience had run out and my craving was reaching uncontrollable proportions.

Note: My family members like the noodles really soft so my cooking times for the noodles are based on that. Follow your package directions and reduce the cooking time accordingly.


Serves 4 (Full meal)
1. a bit less than 1/2 pack of 16oz Rice Noodles
2. 12-15 Cleaned shrimp
3. 3 Eggs beaten
4. a small lime sized ball of tamarind soaked in water to make about 1/2 cup of juice
5. 1/2 Red Onion sliced thin
6. 2 bunches of scallions roots removed and sliced into small pieces
7. 1 tbsp of grated palm sugar
8. 2-3 tsp of Fish Sauce
9. 1 tbsp of Thai Chili Garlic Sauce (the one I have is slightly sweet)
10. 1 1/2 tsp of red chili powder
11. 4 cloves of minced garlic
12. 2-3 tsp oil
13. 1/4 cup of roasted unsalted peanuts crushed
14. Coriander leaves for garnish
15. Lemon wedges

Soak the Rice noodles in cold water for atleast 20-30 minutes

For the sauce
1. In a sauce add the tamrind juice, palm sugar gratings, chili powder and boil
2. Half way through add the fish sauce and boil till it reduces to a slightly thick consistency. Not too thick but pourable.

1. Drain the noodles from the cold water and if still thick to the bite, put them in boiling water for another 4-6 minutes. Drain and set aside. These are going to cook in the wok so don't overcook.
2. Heat a wok add the oil and when hot add the garlic, scallions and saute till the scallions are wilted. Add the sliced onions and saute till they just start to turn brown.
3. Now add the shrimp and saute till they start to turn pink about 2-3 minutes. Fish the shrimp and set them aside. Continue to saute the onions for a few more minutes. sprinkle salt and them set them aside.
4. Now add a bit more oil and add the eggs and scramble them. Now add a bit of salt and some of the chili sauce and 1/4 of the tamarind sauce and the shrimp and saute till the moisture evaporates. Set them aside
5.Now add the noodles and the remaining tamarind sauce and cook till required softness.
6. Add the onions, some of the crushed peanuts, eggs and shrimp and some of the chili sauce and toss them together.
7. Remove from the heat when they are heated through.

Serve with some more peanuts on top, squeeze of lime juice and coriander leaves.

The procedure seems long and winded but it is very simple and quick. I have no reason to not cook it at home and next time I am going to get the bean sprouts for sure.

Enjoy the long weekend and Happy Independence Day!


  1. this looks fantastic. thanks for the recipe.

  2. Looks delicious, ISG! Thanks for the link to the beginner's version, too. Thai food is one area I would like to venture into more, myself. Have a great long weekend! :)

  3. wow, that looks fabulous :) I like it too, never tried it at home... will definitely try yours!

  4. Oh how I wish I could come over and have some of your pah thai, it's one of my favourite dishes to have.

  5. Shrimp and egg with rice noodle look very inviting... Got to try ur recipe :)

  6. Looks delicious, ISG! Though I think it's easier to start cooking Thai with their curries & satays than with Pad Thai! :)
    Hope you're having a fab July 4th weekend (almost coming to a close :(

  7. Never tried Pad Thai but heard of it. Looks good!
    It rained as I told you on the 4th!:D
    But it stopped after a while, fireworks went well. Been busy, thought I would give you a Sunday evening before I close up. Good night Indo!:))

  8. I love Phad Thai and yes, its a good way to judge a restaurant I think....we went to a Thai restaurant on the weekend and there Phad Thai was anything but that!
    Your version looks great!

  9. We jussst picked up a packet of flat rice noodles yesterday. :) will try your recipe.

  10. Am definitely trying this out!! :)

  11. It is awesome, thank you! :)


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