Thursday, February 5, 2009

Pad Thai noodles

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 2 servings [Note: Making > 3 servings at a time will cause the noodles to stick and clump because the pan can't hold that many noodles and allow them to be stirred properly.]

6 oz dried narrow rice noodles
3 T siew (dark sweet soy sauce or 2 T dark soy & 1 T molasses or brown sugar)
2 T fish sauce (zero for NL)
1/4 cup ground roasted peanuts (don't grind too much)
1 T sugar
8 jumbo frozen uncooked shrimp (or equivalent)
1 egg scrambled with 1/4 t salt
2 cubic inches firm tofu, diced
2 t (only, no more) tamarind paste or tamarind concentrate
3 sprigs cilantro, without stems, chopped coarsely
1 c bean sprouts (in a pinch use 1 c cabbage, sliced 1/4" wide)
2" section of daikon (huah chai bpoh) peeled & sliced to 1/4" x 1/4" x 2" or 1 cup of another vegetable
2 t chili & garlic paste
2 scallions finely sliced
4 T shallot chopped (or 1 red small onion)
8 cloves garlic, chopped (not minced)
1/2 t salt
cooking oil (flavorless, like canola)

Set tofu in flat bottomed bowl just big enough to accomodate cubes, add siew & spoon liquid on top every few minutes
Hydrate noodles - see Pad Si-ew recipe
Cook the egg until slightly browned, slice into strips 1/4" x 2" & set aside
Remove seeds from tamarind, chopped well, and mix with 2 T hot water to form a paste, then mix with sugar and set aside

Stir fry:
Saute shallot/onion/garlic over medium heat until fragrant
Turn up heat all the way & grab a handful of noodles, add to saute and stir
Continue adding handfuls of noodles and stirring
When well mixed add sugar/tamarind & chili paste & stir well
If no tofu used, add 1 T of siew
When hot, dump noodle mixture on a plate, heat wok high and add a little oil
Put tofu in a colander to drain, then saute
When browned, add shrimp and daikon & any other long cooking vegetables
When shrimp are almost done dump noodle mixture back in wok
Toss in fish sauce (unless NL is eating, in which case do it at the table)
Toss in & bean spouts (or cabbage) & cook for 15 sec, then turn off heat
Add eggs and scallions and mix well
Taste for salt, fish sauce, sugar, and chili paste
Pour onto a serving plate & sprinkle peanuts & cilantro on top as garnish

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