Pad Thai, also called Phad Thai or Phat Thai, is a Thai style stir-fried rice noodles served mainly as a street food in Thailand. It is recorded by CNN Go at number 5 as one of the World’s 50 most delicious foods in 2011. This dish is more popular in the Western country than in Thailand itself. It is made with dried rice noodles drenched in hot water, then stir-fried with sliced firm tofu, eggs, proteins like prawns, chicken, beef or pork plus vegetables like bean sprouts, coriander leaves, or garlic chives, in a tangy sauce made up of fish sauce, tamarind pulp, garlic, red chillies and palm sugar. Then garnish with coarsely chopped peanuts and serve with lime wedges. For my gluten free version, I am using soaked gluten free Pad Thai noodles (Chang’s), stir-fried with prawns, firm tofu, beansprouts garlic chives in a flavourful sauce made of sweet chilli sauce, fish sauce, soy sauce, tamarind puree, garlic and sugar. Garnish with roughly chopped unsalted roasted peanuts and served with lime wedges.
The origin of this Thailand cuisine is thought to be Chinese as its full name is kway teow pad Thai, kway teow in Hokkien, a Chinese dialect, means Thai style stir-fried rice noodles. While others alleged it is of Vietnamese origin, brought into Ayutthaya by Vietnamese traders. Pad Thai was very popular during the Second World War and made famous in Thailand by its then prime minister and field marshal, Plaek Phibunsongkhram. It is now one of Thailand’s national dishes. No famous Thai restaurants throughout the world will be complete without this much loved Pad Thai dish.
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 kg king prawns shelled and deveined
- 375 g gluten free firm tofu sliced into thick matchsticks about 1cm wide and 6cm in length
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 400 g gluten free Pad Thai rice noodles
- 40 g garlic chives
- 200 g fresh bean sprouts 1 packet, washed and drained
- 4 large eggs beaten
- 2 lime cut into wedges
For the Sauce:
- 4 tablespoons gluten free light soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce
- 4 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce Lingham’s
- 1 tablespoon tamarind puree or paste
- 2 teaspoons Natvia Stevia or raw brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons water
For The Marinade:
- 1 teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1 tablespoon pale or medium dry sherry
For The Omelette:
- Pinch of salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
For the Garnish:
- 100 g coarsely chopped unsalted roasted peanuts
For the omelette:
- Crack all the eggs into a medium bowl, add salt and ground white pepper. Beat all the eggs well with a fork.
- Heat up a medium non-stick frying pan with some extra virgin olive oil on medium to high heat. Add the beaten egg mixture into the frying pan, turn the heat to medium. Move the frying pan around to distribute the egg evenly, cook for about 2 to 3 minutes or until the bottom of the omelette turn slight brown. Turn the omelette around and cook for roughly the same time. Remove omelette onto a plate.
For the noodles:
- Prepare and mix the sauce ingredients in a separate bowl.
- Marinade the prawns with ground white pepper and salt.
- Fill a pot half full of water, bring to a boil and turn off the heat. Add the rice noodles into the wok for 2 minutes or until the rice noodles are soft. Separate the noodles, drain the water and set aside.
- Heat up a wok with 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, stir-fry the prawns on medium to high heat for 2 minutes or until prawns are just cooked. Remove prawns and juice and set aside. Clean wok with kitchen paper towel.
- Heat up the wok again with 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, add in the rice noodles and sauce prepared, stir-fry for 2 minutes on medium to high heat. Return the omelettes to the wok, break the omelettes into smaller pieces, stirring frequently, toss and combine well until the dish is heated through on medium to high heat. Then add in the firm tofu and stir-fry for another 2 minutes.
- Lastly, return the prawns to the wok and add in the garlic chives, and bean sprouts, stir-fry for another 3 minutes or until the noodles and ingredients are mixed through.
- Garnish with coarsely chopped unsalted roasted peanuts and serve with lime wedges.