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Tuesday, May 5, 2015


What I love about Pad Thai is how many different ways there are to create it. You can go vegetarian and use tofu and egg in the place of chicken. One can fry up chicken or pork and add it to a Pad Thai overflowing with crushed peanuts and sprinkled with fried shallots. This dish can even be transformed to suit a strict vegan. It seems like whatever spin one puts on Pad Thai, they can’t go wrong with this iconic dish.

Personally, I like a little chicken for protein and a whole lot of vegetables. Whilst I am a fan of fried shallots, I use fresh green shallots as they are healthier. The recipe below is just a base recipe that I use. Get imaginative and create your very own Pad Thai! 


Pad Thai 

  • 100g flat rice-stick noodles 
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 450g chicken breast fillets, cut into even thin strips OR around 350g firm block tofu, chopped into even cubes
  • 1 broccoli head, cut into even sized florets and stalk chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 medium red capsicum, seeds & membrane removed and thinly sliced 
  • 1 large bunch of buy choy or 3-4 smaller bunches, base removed and roughly chopped 
  • 3 green shallots / onions, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts
  • a handful of fresh coriander leaves, to serve
  • 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
  • the juice of 1 medium lime 
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce (if vegetarian or vegan omit)


1. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Add the rice noodles and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4-5 minutes or until the noodles are tender but not mushy. Drain well with cold water and set aside. 

2. Meanwhile, make the sauce by combining all the ingredients in a small bowl and whisking well to combine. Add a few tablespoons of water to thin out the consistency (I add 4-5 tablespoons of water). Set aside. 

3. Heat a small frying pan over medium heat and toast the peanuts for 3-4 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant. Remove from the heat and set aside to garnish later. 

4. Heat 1 teaspoon sesame oil in a large wok or deep frying pan over high heat. Add the chicken pieces and cook, stirring frequently, for 5-6 minutes or until chicken is white or lightly golden in colour and no pink flesh remains. Remove chicken from the stove and keep warm.

If cooking with tofu, make sure you blot the tofu cubes with paper towel gently to remove any excess moisture before frying. Heat 1 teaspoon sesame oil in a large wok or deep frying pan over medium heat and cook, stirring carefully for a few minutes or until lightly golden. Remove from the stove and blot again with paper towel if oily. Set aside and keep warm. 

5. Add the remainder of the sesame oil (1 teaspoon) to the wok and then add the broccoli, carrot, capsicum and buk choy, stirring to combine. Cook, covered, for 5-6 minutes or until the vegetables are tender but not mushy. Add 3/4 of the chopped green shallots/onions, cooked noodles, chicken or tofu and sauce to the wok/pan and stir until all ingredients are well combined. Remove from the stove and place in a large serving bowl. 

Serve warm with the remaining green shallots/onions and toasted peanuts sprinkled on top as well as the coriander leaves, if you wish.  

Serves / 
Total Preparation time / 15 minutes 
Total Cooking time / maximum 30 minutes 

x Emily 

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