xan's cool space

pad thai

this recipe for pad thai is based on the one from Hot Thai Kitchen. i've modified it slightly, but not much -- this is a really good recipe. mostly i've adjusted it to my tastes and reformatted it into my tabular style. i suggest you look over the instructions in that recipe too, as they explain some stuff about ingredient selection nicely. if you're not familiar with stir frying you might also want to watch her video, but if you are, the technique is pretty obvious.

the recipe assumes you're using strongly flavored meat that takes a little while to cook, like chicken thighs. if you're using mild meat like shrimp, skip marinating. if you're using nonmeat protein like tofu, use your imagination.

Pad Thai on a rectangular blue plate. There are bean sprouts and garlic chives to the left, a lime wedge and a cup of chili sugar to the right, and peanuts and fried shallots on top.

yield: 2 large or 4 small servings

instruction amount item notes
prepare shallot oil and fried shallots see below
rehydrate 125 g rice noodles in room temp water, 1 hr
marinate 2 servings meat in fish sauce at least half an hour
caramelize 35 g palm sugar until just slightly browned
add 3 T water
simmer, stirring until seized caramel dissolves
add 3-4 T tamarind paste reconstitute from pulp
3 T fish sauce use the good stuff!
let rest
:: tofu bowl 3 oz tofu, extra firm in small pieces
3 garlic cloves minced or smashed
1/4 c shallots finely chopped
3 T sweet preserved radish finely chopped
2 T dried shrimp finely chopped
1/2 --- 3/2 t thai chili flake
:: egg bowl 2 eggs lightly beaten
:: veg bowl 120 g bean sprouts
70 g garlic chives cut into 2in pieces
1/4 c roasted peanuts chopped roughly
:: garnish bowl bean sprouts
garlic chives cut into narrow 2in batons
roasted peanuts chopped roughly
fried shallots see below
chili sugar half thai chili flake, half brown sugar
lime cut into wedges
sear marinated meat remove to a dish
saute tofu bowl contents until garlic slightly golden
add and cook noodles and sauce until sauce fully absorbed
check add water if noodles not tender
add and cook eggs let noodles absorb a little runny egg
add off heat veg bowl contents stir together off heat for a minute
garnish and serve

shallot oil

i really like to cook this dish with shallot (or scallion) oil. this step is optional, but encouraged. chop several (6-8 or so?) shallots across the grain into half rounds, then place into a cold pot. add enough vegetable (soybean or other neutral) oil to cover, then 50% more. simmer gently, low enough not to brown them, for at least half an hour, then increase heat just enough to get them brown but not burnt. separate the fried shallots from the oil with a strainer. makes about a cup of oil and plenty of fried shallots. use some of the oil to cook this recipe, and use some of the shallots as a garnish.