Pad Thai

I found tamarind paste! This was one of many main ingredients that I couldn’t really find in Egypt and is essential for making these sweet and tangy Thai stir-fried rice noodles. You can get your tamarind paste from ZUMRA or… wait for it… Ramadan is here and I realized that you can actually get raw dried tamarind! So you could also use that by soaking it in hot water to soften and make sure you just fish out all the seeds before adding it to your Pad Thai sauce.

Before you judge; I’m still missing some authentic Thai add-ons to make this a legit Pad Thai, but for now the world is in grave danger and we work with what we have. The authentic Pad Thai uses rice noodles, garlic chives and soy bean sprouts as main ingredients with the option of adding shrimp. I’ve adjusted a few things here and there to give you a not-so-authentic but very tasty dish that you can easily find the ingredients for.

  • Let’s talk Ingredients (serves 2):
    • Main:
      • 180 g softened rice noodles (available at ZUMRA)
      • 300 g seafood (I used shrimp and crab imitation)
      • 1 egg
      • 100 g firm tofu, cut into strips (drained and dried, preferably fried if you can find it) available at ZUMRA
      • 30 g tomatoes
      • 30 g red bell pepper slices
      • 30 g yellow bell pepper slices
      • 30 g onion slices (preferably green onion if available)
      • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
      • 30 g sweet pickled radish (I used Japanese Takuwan, but Thai is different)
    • Sauce:
      • 2 Tbsp oyster sauce (not in original/authentic recipe)
      • 1 Tbsp sweet chili paste (not in original/authentic recipe)
      • 2 Tbsp fish sauce
      • 2 Tbsp brown sugar (preferably palm or coconut sugar if you can find)
      • 3 Tbsp tamarind paste
    • Garnish:
      • crushed peanuts
      • lime
      • coriander leaves
  • First soften the rice noodles (rice sticks) in warm, not boiling water for at least 20 minutes.
  • Heat up some cooking oil in a large flat skillet. Sautee the shrimp until it gets a nice bright color on both sides.
  • Remove the shrimp from the pan, re-oil and fry the tofu.
  • Start adding the vegetables. Sautee for a few minutes and remove from the skillet if it’s too small. If you can push the vegetables to one side the do that and then add the noodles onto the re-oiled hot, blank surface of the skillet.
  • If you chose to use crab imitation sticks like I did, you could also add them at this point.
  • Continue to stir fry until all ingredients are combined.
  • Add all the ingredients of the sauce to the skillet and continue to stir-fry.
  • Push all the ingredients to one side again and add the egg. Let it set for about 30 seconds before breaking the yolk and mixing it in with the other ingredients.
  • Once you have given your Pad Thai a final mix, serve it immediately with a garnish of lime segments, coriander leaves and a lot of crushed peanuts.
  • Enjoy!

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