We are halfway through the week. Wednesday is apparently the longest day of the week. Third day of the week, two full days away from the weekend. We just drag ourselves through Wednesdays! And cooking is the last thing on our mind after a long day at work. We often end up buying take-out meals, ready-to-eat meals or ready-to-cook meals. Cutting corners is not an option when it comes to clean eating. Anything that is ready made or pre-cooked comes with its cons. Most of it is loaded with oil, sugar, salt and/or chemical preservatives.
Here is a 100% homemade pad Thai recipe to brighten up your Wednesday! Yes, something easy yet different. Make your own pad Thai sauce and store it in the fridge in a glass jar for up to a week or two. No preservatives, no processed sugars. Only natural ingredients! Works absolutely fantastic with tofu, chicken, prawns, or any veggies of your choice – mushrooms, peppers, carrots etc. You can make this sauce ahead of time and then it is a matter of 15 to 20 minutes to get dinner ready on the table. Easy-peasy!
Pad Thai is a style of stir fry noodles finished with a lime wedge, crushed peanuts and bean sprouts. It falls under the ‘street food’ category but is served at restaurants all over the world. The peculiarity of Indian or Asian food is balancing flavours. A bit of sweet, some heat, a little sour and salty together blow your mind away.
Let’s take a peek at the recipe:
1 cup small chicken pieces or shrimp or tofu (your choice, or all three)
Flat rice noodles, soaked in cold water for 1 hour minimum. (Add as per your liking)
2 tbsp chopped garlic
2 dry red chilies, soaked in warm water for 20 min
¼ red onion, sliced thin
½ cup Pad Thai sauce
2 tsp sesame oil, to finish
Thai basil leaves
Regular cooking oil, salt, pepper
Pad Thai sauce:
1 stalk of lemongrass, crushed
1 lime leaf
2 star anise
½ cup tamarind pulp
3 tbsp Jaggery (add more if you like sweeter)
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 cup water
Pad Thai sauce:
- In a hot pan, add 2 tbsp oil, add the lime leaf and star anise. Let it release some aroma, about 30 sec to a minute.
- Add tamarind pulp, crushed lemongrass stalk and jaggery. Add water. Let the jaggery melt over low heat
- Do not boil the sauce, let it cook on low heat for 15 min. Add more water if necessary.
- Finish with fish sauce and a pinch of salt. For vegetarians, you may skip the fish sauce.
- Taste, add more salt or jaggery if you wish.
- Let it cool down, then store in a glass jar in your fridge. It should hold for up to 2 weeks. Keep the lemongrass, star anise and lime leaf in the jar so it holds your sauce flavourful throughout.
- Remove some seeds and blend the soaked red chilies to form a coarse paste.
- In a hot wok, add some oil. Add garlic, onions and chili paste. Sauté on medium heat.
- Add your choice of protein or other veggies- chicken, tofu, mushrooms etc. Sauté for another 2 minutes.
- Then add your Pad Thai sauce, some water if required and let the sauce coat all the ingredients evenly. Keep it a bit saucy for full flavour.
- Add your soaked noodles, a pinch of salt, and black pepper. Toss the noodles and let them cook in the sauce. Add some water if needed.
- While the noodles are cooking, crack an egg in a bowl and whisk it.
- Gather all the noodles and veg to one side of the pan to make some room for ‘scrambled eggs’. Add your whisked egg now and cook like a regular scrambled egg.
- When cooked properly, noodles will hold the shape and look translucent. Do not overcook them. On medium heat, rice noodles take 7 to 8 minutes to cook. Try a noodle to check the doneness. Mix in the scrambled egg. Add another spoon of sauce if you think it is dry.
- Lastly, take some ripped Thai basil leaves and a couple tsp of sesame oil- mix in with the noodles.
- Top it up with fresh coriander, crushed peanuts, and a lime wedge.
- Your homemade Pad Thai is ready!
– Add more red chilies if you like it spicy.
– You may use this sauce just for making stir fry veggies or Thai fried rice, or anything you wanna stir fry.
Send us pictures of your plate, let us know how you like your homemade Pad Thai Noodles.