Image: Kim Cofino
Pad Thai is often considered a signature dish of Thai cuisine. There are several regional variations, and many different recipes. This recipe tries to bring together the most common themes, spices and ingredients to create a familiar and authentic variation on this classic dish.
- 8 ounces wide rice noodles (I like these). These should be soaked at room temperature for about an hour or more, until noodle has softened to your preference.
- 5-6 cloves garlic, finely chopped.
- 2 tablespoons chopped shallots
- 5 to 6 dried shrimp ground in a mortar & pestle or spice grinder to a course powder (dried shrimp can be purchased at your local asian market or you can order them online here)
- 1/2 fresh cooked shrimp
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/4 cup crushed palm sugar (plain granulated sugar can also be used).
- 2 teaspoons tamarind concentrate mixed with 5 teaspoons water (tamarind paste can be purchased at your local asian market or you can order it online here)
- 1 medium egg, beaten
- 1/4 cup chopped chives
- 1/2 cup roasted peanuts, coarsely broken up.
- 1 cup bean sprouts\
- 1/4 cup julienned carrots
- 1/2 cup "Firm" tofu that has been diced (1/2" cubes)
- 1 cup of dry roasted, unsalted peanuts, ground to a coarse meal in a mortar & pestle
- Heat a little cooking oil in a wok and add the garlic and shallots, and briefly stir fry until they just shows signs of changing color.
- Add the remaining ingredients except the egg, dried shrimp, ground peanuts and bean sprouts, and stir fry until the noodles color slightly and soften (about 5 minutes).
- As you stir the noodles, periodically throw in 1-2 tablespoons of water to keep mixture from sticking to wok.
- Slowly "drizzle" in the beaten egg to form a fine ribbon of cooked egg while continuing to stir the rest of the ingredients in the wok.
- Add ground dried shrimp and stir in.
- Add half the bean sprouts and cook for no more than another 30 seconds. Remove from the pan to a serving platter.
- Mix a tablespoon of lime juice with a tablespoon of tamarind juice and a tablespoon of fish sauce, and use this to marinade half a cup of uncooked bean sprouts, half a cup of chopped chives, 1/4 cup julienned carrots and half a cup of very coarsely ground roasted peanuts.
- Plate Pad Thai, with garnish slightly to the side of the main dish.