Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pad Thai!

I'm not sure what put it into my mind to make pad thai, but I had leftover pork, some deep fried tofu chunks, and some frozen shrimp. Plus I had purchased some rice noodles at Jay's the day before so I was in pretty good shape, ingredient wise.

I did an internet search for recipes and perused a few, thus learning the basic ingredients and cooking techniques for the dish (which, frankly, I should intimately know judging from the stack of takeout containers from King and I, each having held pad thai). First and foremost, most recipes gave instruction on getting the sauce made and waiting standby for use. While I should have had tamarind paste, I substituted white wine vinegar (I will definitely get some tamarind paste for the future), added an equal amount of fish sauce (pppppeeeeee U!), a hunk of palm sugar, some rooster sauce and lime juice. One recipe (at least) suggested heating the suace on the stove, and boy did that help the fish sauce to disperse its delightfully fetid odor throughout the house. In the meantime I cooked my noodles (I hadn't bought exactly the right noodles for pad thai, but the rice vermicelli worked fine) and rinsed and drained them.

All the recipes declared a smoking hot wok necessary and the strips of tofu I tossed in the pan (with some oil) sizzled accordingly. Then, slices of leftover pork and a few shrimp were added along with a bit of the fish sauce mixture and a handful of snow peas. Once that liquid was almost absorbed I added two beaten eggs to the wok, after moving the meat aside. I let the eggs scramble thoroughly before stirring them in and adding the noodles and the rest of the sauce. I incorporated the meat and sauce throughout the noodles and kept the heat high. At nearly the end of cooking I added a big handful of bean sprouts and chopped garlic chives. After dishing the pad thai out, I garnished each of our servings with a generous sprinkle of crushed peanuts.

It wasn't King and I, but it was a reasonable facsimile and the Boy was very pleased.


Stephanie said...

I love Pad Thai and the more I make it, the more I prefer it to take out. I am continually amazed that I can cook something that seems so complicated. Really, it is just that it has complex flavors and requires good timing. Looks delicious and the pork sounds good!

Cat Pick said...

We always get pork pad thai and King and I, so it seemed a natural. I think I would leave the shrimp out next time though. Sometimes shrimp just tastes weird to me.

I was pretty chuffed that I got so close to the real thing on my first try. Fish sauce is magic! Actually it kind of is because it makes things taste good, but nothing like fish sauce!

Gaylan said...

I wish I had more success with cooking Asian food. It never seems to come out quite right. Sigh.

Cat Pick said...

Keep trying, Gaylan! It's taken me a long time to start getting it right rather than ending up with a wok full of tasty mush.

Steve Pick said...

Please don't leave out the shrimp. Yum!