I got this recipe from my Dad. I’m not sure where the original recipe came from… it may be an America’s Test Kitchen recipe but I’m not sure. After trying this particular recipe, I’ve never tried any other Pad Thai recipes… this one is IT! It is one of my favorite recipes to make when I’m just cooking for me. It does take a little while to assemble all the ingredients, but after you’ve got everything chopped up, the actual cooking time is very short.
You will need five ingredients for the sauce. 3/4 Tablespoon of Tamarind paste , 2 1/2 Tablespoons of fish sauce, 1-3 teaspoons of chili sauce and 3 Tablespoons of palm sugar (or brown sugar, which is what I used), and 1/4 cup of hot water. Mix together in a small bowl and set aside. Mince 4 cloves of garlic, and dice one shallot or 1/4 cup of red onion. If you are going to cook some spring rolls, this would be a good time to preheat the oven. Someday I will learn to make my own, but right now I’m happy with my Chungs shrimp spring rolls I get in the freezer section.
Make sure the shrimp is thawed and shells removed. I happened to have a bag of jumbo shrimp in my freezer so I used those and cut them a little smaller. I laid them on a paper towel to absorb any extra moisture. Measure out two cups of bean sprouts. Prepare cilantro and lime for garnishing.
Bring a pot of water to a boil and then turn off heat. Soak 8 oz of rice noodles (linguini width) into hot water for 5 minutes. You don’t want them to be too soft because you will continue cooking them in the sauce. Soggy rice noodles are yucky! Drain noodles and make sure you have everything measured and ready to put into the pan at the proper time. Begin by adding 2 Tablespoons of oil to a skillet on medium high heat. Stir fry garlic and onions for one minute.
Add shrimp and cook until pink and push to the side. Crack an egg into the middle of the skillet and stir fry to scramble about one minute. Add drained noodles to the pan and toss briefly to mix.
Drizzle pad thai sauce over top and use 2 utensils and a gentle “tossing” motion to combine everything together (like tossing a salad). Keep the heat between medium and medium-high – you want your pan hot enough to cook the noodles, but not so hot that the noodles burns. Stir fry 4-5 minutes and then add the bean sprouts and stir fry one more minute.
Mouth watering yet? Put some noodles on your plate and garnish with cilantro, peanuts and lime juice.