Ask anyone whose had Thai food what their first foray with the cuisine was like and they’ll probably mention Pad Thai. A favorite dish among many Thai restaurant-goers, many of us have no idea as to how to recreate it at home. People are often intimidated to cook ethnic food but usually, you’re working with the same basic ingredients, but new spices and flavors.
Lately I’ve been experimenting with Asian-inspired dishes like Kung Pao Shrimp and Baked Tofu, so I had most of the ingredients on hand to create my typical take-out favorite. This dish is a lot slimmer than the Pad Thai you get from you favorite take-out joint, as I have a sneaking suspicion that most restaurants use more than three tablespoons of oil.
Cooking with tofu is easier and decidedly more appealing to me than cooking with poultry or beef. Don’t get me wrong – I’m as much of a carnivore as anyone else – but the fact that you have to sanitize your cooking surface after touching raw poultry and can get a number of deadly diseases from meat that hasn’t been cooked properly will never cease to give me the creeps.
Tofu Pad Thai
What You Need:
3 tablespoons fish sauce
Juice from one large lime
2 tablespoons sugar
8 ounces rice noodles (Pad Thai style)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil or canola oil (divided)
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 shallots, thinly sliced
16 ounces extra-firm tofu, cut into cubes
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup fresh bean sprouts
1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts
2 tablespoons scallions, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (as garnish, optional)
1 lime, cut into wedges (as garnish, optional)
Heat two tablespoons of oil in wok or pan over high heat. Add garlic, shallots and tofu to pan and cook until tofu is heated through and begins to caramelize around the edges. Set aside on a plate or in a large bowl.
Add remaining tablespoon of oil to pan then pour in eggs; stir until cooked, about 1 minute. Make sure to break up the egg into small pieces. Reduce heat to low, add sauce and noodles to pan and mix well.
Add cooked tofu and bean sprouts to noodles and toss. Garnish with cilantro, peanuts, scallions, and lime wedges and serve hot.