(Recipe can be found on The Curvy Carrot site here.)
Step by Step Instructions:
This Classic Pad Thai calls for the following ingredients: Rice Noodles, Canola Oil (in my case, but peanut or vegetable oil works too), Chili Paste, White Vinegar, Soy Sauce, Unsalted Peanuts, about 1 cup of bean sprouts, Cilantro, Brown Sugar, 7 ounces of Tofu, 2 Eggs, 2 Shallots, and 2 Limes. (Not pictured is 1 clove of garlic.)
You can do a lot of the prep work ahead of time. I finely minced 2 shallots. I used a paper towel to cut the shallots on. I cut shallots like I do an onion, and I love this paper towel technique, because it keeps the onions or shallots from sliding on the cutting board and resulting in nicks and cuts.
I washed, dried, and chopped a large handful of cilantro. You’ll want 1/2 cup of cilantro, plus some more for garnishing.
Next up was the juicing of one lime. Smell-o-vision would be so lovely right now.
Then I chopped up about 1/2 cup of peanuts and a few extra for garnishing.
I then sliced off about 7 ounces of tofu and patted it dry with a paper towel.
I diced the tofu into small pieces. I’m not a huge tofu fan, so I didn’t want giant hunks of tofu hanging out in my dish. One thing to note if you don’t work with tofu much is that there is a lot of moisture in it. Once the tofu was diced I put it on several layers of paper towel. Then I folded up more paper towels and lightly pressed it over the top. You’ll find that those towels will be completely wet by the time you’re ready for the tofu.
In a large saucepan, heat one tablespoon of oil over medium heat.
Then whisk 2 eggs and add them to the pan. Use a spatula and lightly fold the eggs until they are nice and scrambled. After 1-2 minutes, the eggs will be cooked. Move them to a plate until you’re ready for them again.
I whisked up the sauce, which included 3 tablespoons of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of white vinegar, 2 teaspoons of chili paste, the juice of one lime, 2 tablespoons of brown sugar, and 1/2 cup of water. The smell was so delightful!
Then I wiped out my saucepan and heated up 2 tablespoons of oil.
Once the oil was hot, the shallots and garlic were added and sauteed about 1 minute.
Then pour in the sauce and stir it up.
Here comes the fun part. Layer 8 ounces of rice noodles over the top in a single layer and lightly press down with a spatula so that the noodles start to absorb the liquid. Continue pressing occasionally.
After a couple of minutes carefully flip the noodles with a spatula and add 1/2 cup of water to the pan.
You want to continue this process of carefully flipping and adding 1/2 cup of water to the pan until the noodles are tender enough to be tossed with tongs. Then continue cooking the noodles, occasionally adding 1/2 cup of water at a time for 15 minutes.
While the noodles cooked, I sliced up some lime wedges.
Here are the noodles after 15 minutes. I found that when the noodles seemed to be running out of liquid, I would add more water. But be careful that it isn’t super liquid-y at the end. Just nicely cooked and coated.
Now it’s time to finish up! Pardon the blurry pic, I was just anxious to stir…I kind of love to stir. (It’s true.) So in went the scrambled eggs, 1 cup of bean sprouts, 1/2 cup of cilantro, and 1/2 cup of chopped peanuts.
Then toss everything together and it’s time to serve it up. I garnished with some additional squeezed lime wedges and some chopped peanuts. Oh my goodness gracious this was a rockin’ dish and luckily I had leftovers a plenty! Happy cooking my friends!
Makes about 4 servings
3 tablespoons peanut oil (or canola or vegetable oil), divided
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 teaspoons chili paste
Juice of one lime
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 shallots, minced
1 clove of garlic, minced
2 and 1/2 cups water
8 ounces narrow rice noodles (I used Annie Chun’s brand)
7 ounces firm tofu, cubed
1 cup mung bean sprouts
1/2 cup unsalted peanuts, coarsely chopped, plus more for garnish
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped, plus more for garnish
Lime wedges, for garnish
1. In a deep sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat until shimmering.
2. Crack the eggs into the pan, and, using a spatula, gently fold the eggs and scramble them until they are cooked and heated through, about 1-2 minutes or so. Remove the eggs from the pan and set aside.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, vinegar, chili paste, lime juice, brown sugar, and 1/2 cup of water, mixing well.
4. Put the remaining 2 tablespoons of the oil into the pan and heat the oil again over medium-high heat until shimmering.
5. Add the shallots and the garlic to the pan, cooking until softened and fragrant, about 1 minute or so.
6. Pour the soy sauce mixture over the shallots and mix to combine.
7. Place the uncooked noodles on top of the mixture, pressing the noodles down to flatten them with a spatula. Let them sit over the soy sauce mixture for about two minutes, pressing them down occasionally to soak up the liquid.
8. Carefully flip the noodles over and add another 1/2 cup of the water. Again, gently press on the noodles with a spatula in order to soak up more liquid.
9. Repeat flipping the noodles and adding more water as necessary (up to 2 more cups or so), until the noodles are soft and can be tossed with tongs.
10. Once softened, let the noodles cook for another 15 minutes or so, tossing them occasionally in the sauce.
11. Add the tofu, bean sprouts, peanuts, cilantro, and scrambled egg, mixing to thoroughly combine, tasting and adjusting the seasonings if desired.
12. Serve immediately, garnishing with additional peanuts, cilantro, and lime wedges.