Food How to make authentic Pad Thai B8

How to make authentic Pad Thai
January 9–15, 2013
Direct from a street vendor in Thailand.
By Cindy Drukier & Jan
Epoch Times Staff
Thai cooking is celebrated as one of
the premier cuisines in the world.
Over the past roughly 20 years, its
popularity has grown so much that
Thai restaurants have sprung up
in almost every suburb in Australia. Most Thai street vendors would
be amazed to know that “Pad Thai”
has become a household word
Down Under.
Over the centuries, Thai cooking
has had many influences. Chinese
food was a major one since the “Tai”
people originally migrated from
valley settlements in the mountainous region of south-west China
(now Yunnan Province) between
the 6th and 13th centuries. They
settled into what is now known
as Thailand, Laos, the Shan states
of upper Burma and north-west
Vietnam. Foreign trade was also
an important factor. The Portuguese brought their sweets to King
Narai’s court in the 17th century
and some say Buddhist monks
from India brought curry to Thailand. Other traders brought Persian
and Arabian recipes and spices.
Through taking a little something from each of these cultures
and combining them with the
area’s rich biodiversity, over time,
Thailand has developed its own
unique cuisine. Its amazing popularity is due to the fact that it’s
healthy, easy to prepare and most
importantly, delicious.
The secret to the Thai cuisine is
in harmonising four tastes: sour,
sweet, salty and spicy. Each flavour
should be balanced with the others, yet remain distinctly identifiable. Although spiciness is often
thought of as the defining characteristic of Thai food, the “heat”
must be equalised with the right
mix of roots, grasses and aromatic
herbs, such as sweet basil, mint,
coriander, lemongrass and galangal (from the ginger family).
In addition to taste, equally
important to Thai cooking is
having a variety of textures and
colours. And always be sure to pay
attention to presentation. As you’ll
learn watching any street vendor
in an alley way in Bangkok, it’s not
authentic Thai food if it doesn’t
look as good as it tastes!
Pad Thai
Pad Thai is Thailand’s signature
dish. Like the word “Thai” (which
means free), Thai cooks are never
rigid in their approach. So be flexible in your interpretation of the
recipes, particularly if you can’t
find every ingredient. Sour, sweet,
salty and spicy can all be found in
the basic recipe, but it’s up to individual’s taste to get the balance
just right.
Serves 4
250g dried rice noodles (half a
pack of Chantaboon noodles)
3 tbsp oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
10 medium prawns or 250g
chicken or 250g firm tofu (optional)
1/4 cup dried shrimp/prawns
2 tsp diced pickled or salted radish (optional*)
1/2 cup firm tofu, diced
1/4 cup fish sauce
1/4 cup sugar (palm sugar preferably)
2 tbsp tamarind juice**
1 or 2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup 1-inch-long chopped
1/4 cup ground roasted peanuts
1 cup bean sprouts
* Pickled radish can be hard to
come by, but if you really want to
go authentic you can find it in your
local Asian grocery store.
** Tamarind’s unique sourness
makes Pad Thai taste like Pad Thai,
but if you don’t have it, throw in
some lime juice instead.
1/2 cup bean sprouts
1/2 cup chopped chives
1/2 lime, cut into wedges (sour)
Provide the following extras to
allow each guest to balance the flavours as he or she wishes:
Ground peanuts
Dried ground chilli (spicy)
Sugar (sweet)
Fish sauce (salty)
1. Soak the rice noodles in cold
water for 30 minutes or until soft.
Drain and set aside. A quicker
method is to boil the noodles for
about 2.5 minutes, then drain and
rinse with cold water. But be sure
not to overcook them or they will
disintegrate when stir-fried.
2. Heat a large skillet until hot,
then add the oil. Add the garlic and
prawns (chicken or tofu), and stirfry. Add the dried shrimp, pickled
radish and diced tofu.
3. Once the prawns (chicken or
tofu) are cooked, add the noodles
and stir-fry until translucent. It
may be necessary to reduce the
heat if the mixture is cooking too
quickly and the noodles stick.
4. Add the tamarind juice, fish
sauce and sugar. Stir-fry the mixture until thoroughly combined.
Stir in the egg.
5. Turn the heat to high and cook
until the egg sets, stirring gently.
Thoroughly combine the mixture
and continue cooking over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes
until most of the liquid is reduced.
6. Mix in the chives, peanuts
and bean sprouts. Place on a serving dish, arrange the bean sprouts,
chives and lime attractively, and
Don’t forget to offer extra peanuts, ground chilli and sugar on
the side.
Jan Jekielek/Epoch Times
Step 2
Jan Jekielek/Epoch Times
Step 3A
Step 3B
Jan Jekielek/Epoch Times
Jan Jekielek/Epoch Times
Step 4A
Jan Jekielek/Epoch Times
Step 4B
Jan Jekielek/Epoch Times
Step 5
Jan Jekielek/Epoch Times
Step 6
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