Almost Perfect Pad Thai

So I got to thinking about some of my favorite foods, and of course thinking about this made me think of my mom and my older sister Coralee. My Mom owned a little Asian cafe/grocery store, and Coralee helped her run it. Together they created some of the most delicious recipes on the face of this planet. They made this perfect Pad Thai, an authentic Thai noodle dish with none of this ketchup and brown sugar sauce. They used real tamarind, dried shrimp, tender morsels of tofu, and all the other ingredients that make Pad Thai. . . well . . . Pad Thai. While I absolutely adore their recipe, I don’t often have all the ingredients on hand – tamarind for example, or even dried shrimp. So I found this other recipe and adapted it. (from Eat Shrink and Be Merry of all places). But I found that their sauce was not as tasty as my Mom’s. I liked that the recipe is low-fat, but it lacks that authentic flavor. So, I fiddled with the recipe, and rather than use tamarind, I cheat on my busy work days, and add a little of the jarred Pad Thai sauce readily available in your local grocery store. The flavor comes out close to (but not quite) what my Mom used to make, and the dish is quick and easy to make.

Almost Perfect Pad Thai

3 TB lime juice
3 TB fish sauce
2 TB ginger root
3 TB soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 TB any brand jarred Pad Thai sauce (Thai Kitchen is what I’ve used most often)

2 boxes of Thai Kitchen rice stick noodles (1/4 or 1/8 in wide) prepared per package directions. I always add a bit of oil to the water, a trick from my mom so the noodles don’t stick together.

1/2 cup thinly sliced onions
3 garlic cloves minced
1 red bell pepper thinly sliced
8 oz shrimp, peeled, deveined
8 oz cooked chicken
1 cup extra firm tofu
1/4 c fresh cilantro

For Garnish
1/2 c chopped green onions
2 cups bean sprouts
1/4 chopped peanuts

Prep sauce by mixing together sauce ingredients in a bowl, set aside.

Stir fry onions and garlic in a couple of tablespoons canola oil over medium-high heat, 1-2 minutes. Add red pepper, cook a couple more minutes. Add shrimp, tofu, chicken and cilantro. Cook 3 minutes; add sauce and noodles. Toss in hot pan for a minute or until well combined. Place on serving dish, top with garnishes. Serve immediately.

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2 thoughts on “Almost Perfect Pad Thai

  1. Kari says:

    Wow, thanks for the special recipe! George’s favorite!

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