Pad Thai

For some reason, we have been on a bit of an Asian kick lately. It just sounds so good to me! I wanted to learn how to make Pad Thai, which is just about the most basic Thai dish around, because it's cheaper than buying it :o) So of course, I turned to Alton Brown, because he is the master of doing all things "the right way" in the kitchen. I knew I could get an authentic recipe from him...

I ended up making lots of changes to his recipe, mostly because I just don't have all the stuff it called for. But I've made it 3 times now, and everyone who's had it has loved it! And it's actually extremely fast and easy to make, so that sealed it for me...

HERE'S the link to Alton's original recipe, but I will post mine with the changes below.

Alton Brown's Pad Thai
(with Karen's substitutions)
1 ounce tamarind paste (or 2 TB brown sugar & 2 TB lime juice, mixed)
3/4 cup boiling water
2 TB fish sauce
2 TB palm sugar (or brown sugar)
1 TB rice wine vinegar
4 oz. rice stick noodles (I use the Thai Kitchen brand)
1-2 TB vegetable oil
1 cup chopped scallions, divided
2 tsp. minced garlic
2 whole eggs, beaten
1 lb. large shrimp or chicken, cut in bite-size pieces
3 oz. bean sprouts, divided
1/2 cup roasted salted peanuts, chopped & divided
1 lime, cut into wedges

Combine fish sauce, sugar, and rice wine vinegar in a small bowl; add to brown sugar/lime juice combination, and set aside.

Follow the directions on the back of the rice noodle box to cook noodles; set aside while you prepare remaining ingredients.

Place a wok or large skillet over high heat. Once hot, add 1 TB oil. Heat until it shimmers, then add shrimp (cook until pink--doesn't take long) or chicken (till browned on edges). Add 2/3 of the scallions, then the garlic, and cook for 10-15 seconds (don't let the garlic burn). Add the eggs to the pan and scramble them. Then add the following ingredients in order, tossing each time you add something new: noodles, sauce, 2/3 of the bean sprouts, and 2/3 of the chopped peanuts. Toss everything till heated through, then transfer to a serving dish.

Garnish with remaining scallions, bean sprouts and peanuts. Add lime wedges for decoration. ENJOY!
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