Pad Thai is amazing. It’s delicious. Sweet, salty and sour all at once, it’s been a longstanding favourite of ours. We tend to be quite picky as well; we prefer the home-cooked variety of Pad Thai that is only found in independent, small family-run restaurants (rather than chic but westernized versions in larger, slickly decorated establishments).
This recipe is not strictly authentic (as it doesn’t use tamarind paste), but it is still true to the taste and texture of real Pad Thai. Also, most of the ingredients in this recipe are very easy to come by and can be bought at any major supermarket. Even better, it is very quick and easy to make. It takes 20 minutes tops!
A note about the noodles: this is the only ingredient in this recipe that may be new to some folks. You need to buy rice noodles that are flat and look like thin, white linguine. For this recipe to work, they must also be dry. FYI, they are sometimes called rice sticks.
Easy Pad Thai
- 1 package dried rice noodles (flat)
- 1 cup cooked tiger prawns (peeled with tail on)
- 4 eggs, beaten
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-2 cups bean sprouts
- 3 green (spring) onions, chopped finely
- about 1/3 cup fresh coriander, stems picked and roughly chopped
- lime slices, for serving
- about 1 cup roasted peanuts, roughly chopped or diced
- oil for frying
- 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- hot sauce (siracha or sambal oelek) to taste (usually 1 teaspoon)
Boil a full kettle of water. Put the dry rice noodles in a large metal bowl or deep pan. Pour the boiling water over them.
Meanwhile, whisk the sauce ingredients together. Adjust to taste.
Heat about 2 tablespoons of oil in a large wok over medium high heat. Stir fry the garlic until aromatic but not brown. Quickly toss the shrimp in the oil for one minute. Push the garlic and shrimp to the side of the wok. Pour in the beaten egg. Scramble quickly, making sure to break the egg up into small pieces.
Pour the sauce into the wok. Drain the noodles.
Quickly dump the softened noodles into the wok. Toss quickly and constantly in the sauce.
Use two large spoons or spatulas to toss the noodles – much like tossing a salad. Keep tossing until the noodles are JUST done (not crunchy and slightly chewy). Do not add more water and do not overcook!! If you find the noodles have already absorbed all the sauce but still need more cooking, push everything to side of the wok and add a tablespoon of oil and continue tossing until just cooked. Adjust seasoning to taste (by adding more fish sauce or lime juice).
Add the bean sprouts and half of your coriander, green onion, and peanuts. Toss quickly and transfer to a plate.
Top with the remaining coriander, green onion and peanuts. Serve with lime wedges. This dish goes really well with Thai curries and jasmine rice!