The first of the three dishes that my friend Mary and I made after taking our cooking class was Pad Thai. This recipe stumped us at first, as the proportions looked wacky and we weren't sure how many people it was supposed to serve, so we made a few adjustments to serve our party of 8.
The flavor was perfection, but the texture left a little something to be desired since we didn't soak the noodles long enough (we did 30 minutes, recommended by our teacher). Next time I make this, I'll try adding 10 minutes at a time until it comes out right. Anyone have any advice for how long to soak the noodles? We're on the right track with this dish, just needs a bit of fine-tuning.
Adapted from Niddy
8-10 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined, and tails removed
8 oz medium rice noodles, soaked in room temperature water for ~40 minutes
1/2 cup firm white tofu, cubed
1 cup bean sprouts
1/4 cup sliced chinese chives or green onion
1/4 cup ground peanuts
1 tbsp sweet pickled radish
1 large (or 2 small) garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp minced shallot
4 tbsp tamarind paste
1 1/2 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp fish sauce
about 3/4 c vegetable oil, divided
1 cup water
2 limes, cut into wedges for garnish
1. Heat a few tbsp of the oil in a pan or a wok. Fry prepared tofu until all sides are golden brown. Place on paper towel to absorb oil. Set aside. Mix together tamarind paste, sugar, and fish sauce, set aside.
2. Heat a few more tablespoons of vegetable oil in a pan or a wok. On medium-high heat, add minced garlic, shallots and pickled radishes in the pan. Stir fry until fragrant. Take care not to burn.
3. Add shrimp and deep-fried tofu. Mix and stir until shrimp is cooked. Once shrimp is cooked, push all to the side of the pan to create room for noodles.
4. Add another tablespoon of vegetable oil into the space in the pan and then add noodles, and tamarind paste mixture. Quickly stir and mix them well. When stirring the noodles, try to spread them out. If the noodles look too dry, dip your fingers into the 1 c. of water and sprinkle the water on the noodles. Sprinkle water on the noodles as needed. You likely won't use all of the water.
5. Once the noodles are soft and cooked, mix them with the other ingredients that are on the side of the pan. Once again push the mixed noodles to the side of the pan to create room for an egg.
6. Crack the egg into the space and scramble it with a spatula or a cooking spoon. Push the mixed noodles on top of the egg. Add the chives or green onion and 1/2 cup of bean sprouts. Mix well and turn off heat.
7. Divide onto plates. Garnish with remaining bean sprouts, ground peanuts, and lime.