Pad Thai is a classic street food found all over Thailand that’s best eaten hot, immediately after it has been prepared.
Originally the dish was a staple of a diet low in meat, incorporating flavors and textures of the most basic ingredients in the Thai kitchen.
But today’s Pad Thai is often served with large fresh shrimp, crab and other proteins, making it a heartier dish.
Use a wide, shallow sauté pan or wok and prepare all the ingredients before heating the pan because the cooking goes quickly.
¼ pound medium-width rice stick noodles (fettuccini-shaped dry rice noodles)*
¼ cup water
¼ cup rice vinegar*
¼ cup fish sauce*
1 tablespoon palm sugar* or regular sugar
1 tablespoon seedless, wet tamarind concentrate*
2 to 4 tablespoons vegetable oil (peanut oil is preferred)
2 eggs, slightly scrambled
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 shallot, sliced thinly
½ pound uncooked chicken breasts, cut into ¼-inch slices, or medium shrimp, butterflied (optional)
2 tablespoons preserved radish (sweet), coarsely chopped*
2 tablespoons dried baby shrimp*
1 cup extra firm, salty tofu, diced into ½-inch cubes*
2 cups bean sprouts
1 cup garlic chives* or regular spring onions, sliced into 1-inch sections (use both white and green parts)
2 to 4 Thai chilies,* chopped, or cayenne pepper
1 cup chopped, roasted peanuts
2 limes, cut into wedges
Tip: *Items are readily available in Asian markets.
For cooking instructions, see the gallery below: