Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Table Talk: Pad Thai with Shrimp

I have some confessions to make.  I'm not really sure what this is supposed to taste like.  I don't know that I've ever been to a Thai restaurant.  The only Pad Thai I've tasted is from a kit at the grocery store.  So I probably am not the best judge of what Pad Thai should be.  So, just keep that in mind when you read my opinion of how it came together!  Mmmkay?

I liked it.  I thought it tasted fresh and delicious.  My kids liked it too but Tyler isn't really a fan of Thai food so he just tolerated it.  I can see myself making this again.  It came together pretty quickly and easily.  The hardest part was finding the rice noodles!  I went to 16 grocery stores before I found them.  Okay, maybe it was 5 but it still seemed excessive!  I, luckily, had some tamarind concentrate that I'd ordered from Amazon for a different recipe, otherwise that would have been harder to find (I've tried before).  The book included a substitution list for the tamarind which would have been super helpful in that circumstance.

Pad Thai with Shrimp
1 T tamarind concentrate
2/3 cup hot water
3 T fish sauce
3 T sugar
1 T canola oil
1 T rice vinegar
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (I only used a dash because I was scared!  Next time I might use a little more)

Noodles, Shrimp and Garnish
8 oz dried, flat rice noodles (Thai rice noodles) about 1/4 inch thick
1 T canola oil
12 oz medium shrimp (40-50/lb) peeled and deveined
1 shallot, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 eggs, lightly beaten
6 oz bean spouts
4 scallions, sliced thin
Salt to taste
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
2 T chopped, roasted, unsalted peanuts
Lime wedges for serving

Combine sauce ingredients and set aside.  Bring 4 quarts of water to boil.  Remove from heat and stir in noodles.  Let stand, stirring occasionally until softened but not fully cooked (8-10 minutes).  Drain noodles and set aside in colander.

Heat 1 1/2 tsp oil in skillet or wok, until just smoking.  Add shrimp and cook until shrimp are curled and browned slightly, turning as necessary, about 3 minutes.  Transfer to a bowl and set aside.  

Heat remaining 1 1/2 tsp oil until shimmering.  Add shallots and garlic and cook until lightly browned about 1 1/2 minutes.  Add eggs and stir constantly until scrambled but still moist (about 20 seconds).  

Add noodles and sauce.  Cook, tossing gently until noodles are evenly coated, about 1 minute.

Add shrimp, sprouts, and scallions to the skillet and cook, tossing gently until shrimp are heated through and noddles are tender, about 2 minutes.  Season with salt to taste.  To serve, sprinkle with cilantro and peanuts and serve with lime wedges.

Serves 4

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