Friday 12 September 2014

Simple Pad Thai at home recipe and adventures in Thailand

Pad Thai in Thailand is seriously good and recreating the same flavour at home is not easy, getting close however could not be simpler.

Every tourist who has been to Thailand will tell you of the street food joys the country has, though not necessarily the after effects...and I have been fortunate to spend a few weeks there. One friend who travelled with me during New Years Eve ate pad Thai for nearly every meal for an entire week and this says nothing for the heavenly curries.

Pad Thai and tea

In Asia, making a pad Thai is extremely straightforward as the ingredients will always be to hand, however in Europe and America you may have to go to the Asian market for certain things.

You can make a pad Thai in a frying pan but using a large wok is much more authentic with the flame ridiculously high, lighting the oil as you toss the hell out of the ingredients and feeling far more authentic.

This recipe serves two people:


1 small handful of Thai glass noodles (these look clear and are about the width of Italian Linguine)
1 Egg
~50 grams of silken/firm tofu
1 red onion
1 handful of bean sprouts
1 handful of peeled prawns

1 tablespoon ground peanuts
1/2 tablespoon of sugar
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons of Asian chilli sauce
Dried chilli flakes to taste

2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
2 limes

Optional: 1 small handful of dried prawns (these are very Asian and may not be to a westerner’s palate hence my addition of fresh prawns)

How to cook
  • Cover the glass noodles with room temperature water and leave for about 20-30 minutes until they are completely soft (they won't get softer during cooking and eating plastic is not nice!) and drain
  • Dice the tofu and finely dice the onion
  • Mix all of the sauce ingredients together and combine with the tofu and onions by the wok
  • Put the wok over medium/high heat until holding your hand over it feels hot
  • Add the oil and the optional dried prawns and stir for a 30 seconds
  • Crack the egg into the pan and quickly mix it about to break it up, then add the prawns for 30 seconds
  • add the bowl of sauce ingredients and noodles
  • Stir fry and toss to coat the noodles for about 1 minute to finish the prawns
  • Serve with lime halves on the side as the acidity balances the spiciness of the dish
Hope you enjoy your pad Thai, perhaps along with a milky Thai tea on the side just like us.

Pad Thai stall Bangkok.. Flowery apron, optional

As a side note, I find Thailand a place you love and hate. The people can be very friendly or very money grabbing and it can often be hard to negotiate as store holders know there are so many people who will pay full price, unlike other SE Asian countries such as Cambodia and the Philippines.

Thailand also suffers from too many tourists at its beaches (which are nice nonetheless) and you may feel you are in Greece or Spain judging by the proportion of white people. Personally, for beaches, I would fully recommend the Philippines which has far less tourism away from Boracay, such as El Nido.

I take nothing away from Thailand though as it is a magnificent place with great street food so I will leave some more pictures here for those interested.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the recipe, I must say it looks really delicious and I cant wait to make this at home and try it. Thai flavors are so unique.