homemade pad thai
Okay guys - this quite honestly could be one of my favorite recipes of all time. I thoroughly enjoy Thai food, it's a big combination of the savory, the spicy, all the veggies, gosh I could go on forever. And I don't know about you, but ordering out can add up pretty quickly - not to mention the amount of sodium that is likely found in restaurants. A few years I started playing with a whole bunch of flavors to mimic that of pad Thai. Through a lot of trial and error, this one fits the bill.
There's just something so great about pad Thai - its extremely versatile: vegetarian, chicken, fish, shrimp, the vegetable possibilities are absolutely endless, and its one of those recipes that quite honestly you can use left overs in the fridge, or prep everything the night before and throw it together. When I really sit down and think about how long it takes, it takes more time to cut up veggies than it does to blend all the ingredients with noodles and sauce. The best part about this recipe, is that we have leftovers forever. I try really hard to have the same amount of veggies as noodles, making it even more filling.
First things first - you'll want to have your protein. When making this tonight, I diced up two chicken breasts and just quickly sauteed them. A quick pinch of turmeric, but you can make this with nothing as it'll eventually be coated in sauce. As the chicken cooks, you'll want to scramble your eggs. I read about this trick a few years back, and I thought it was weird when I first saw it. Scramble two eggs and some curry powder? Weird. But I promise you when its in there, its an added ingredient you'll want. Set chicken and eggs aside when cooked. Typically while those are cooking, I'll also start prepping my vegetables. Tonight I had broccoli, sweet peppers, and carrots. I've made this before with; mushrooms, edamame, cauliflower, squash, peas, corn, probably more but I can't think of them off the top of my head. I usually cut them pretty thin and steam them really quickly if need be, but I like to keep them pretty crunchy. I'll throw everything in the pan I cooked the chicken in while I wait for everything to be ready and the noodles to cook.
If you haven't used rice noodles before, they are a little different - mostly in the way you prepare them. Boil your water as you normally would for pasta, and when its reached a rolling boil, turn off the heat and put your noodles in, and fully submerge them. You'll want them to just sit in the hot water for about 8-10 minutes. Check it as you would regular pasta and strain when its got the right bite for you. The one big thing to make note of: rinse these noodles with COLD water. If you don't, the starches can make this a little gloopy, and you won't have nicely coated pad Thai. (For future reference, if you're cooking with any gluten free pasta, you'll want to do the same thing!)
In the time that I am waiting for my pasta, is the time you should make this sauce. Over the years I've stopped adding salt and pepper to this sauce. While I normally would say that's my first seasoning, in this, you get enough other flavors you really don't need it. Soy sauce or tamari, a little honey or maple syrup, sriracha, sesame seeds and oil, ginger, cayenne, garlic - and the one (kind of) secret ingredient: peanut butter. I like to mix everything but the PB first, and add that in last. I usually do between 2-3 tablespoons depending on how thick I want the sauce to be. You really don't want to do too much more than that, as it'll then make it too thick and too peanuty.
When you're good and ready, turn your heat back on, add the sauce first, and then the noodles. Get your muscles ready and start turning and tossing. I usually at this point have so many noodles and veggies it takes about 5-10 minutes to truly get it coated nicely. I keep the heat on low as everything is already cooked and I just am trying to warm it back up. When everything's been nicely coated, get it on a plate and serve. I like topping with green onions. And let me tell you one more thing: you think its delicious the night you have it - just wait until you have the leftovers the next day - (that's if to say there are any!)
homemade pad thai
Prep Time: 20-30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
1 tablespoon curry powder
2-3 carrots, sliced thinly
5-6 mini sweet peppers, sliced
Half a head of broccoli
2 chicken breasts, cooked
Half a box of brown pad thai rice noodles
Olive oil to coat pan
For the sauce:
½ cup of soy sauce or tamari
½ teaspoon minced ginger
3/4 – 1 teaspoon sriracha
1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
Dash of cayenne
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
½ teaspoon sesame oil
2-3 tablespoons of peanut butter
Cook chicken or prepare other protein, set aside.
Scramble 2 eggs with 1 tablespoon of curry powder, set aside.
While chicken and eggs cook, slice and dice your vegetables. Steam quickly if you'd like, then set aside with chicken.
Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. When it is boiling turn off the heat and fully submerge noodles. Let sit for 8-10 minutes.
As the noodles cook, prepare all ingredients for the sauce and set aside.
When the noodles are cooked, strain and rinse with cold water.
Turn the saute pan on with the chicken and vegetables to low heat and pour in sauce. Toss to coat. Add in noodles and continue to toss until everything is coated evenly. About 5-10 minutes.
Serve with green onions, sriracha, sesame seeds - or as is.