In this older post, Thai Chicken Noodle Soup, I have written down a list of ingredients that I always take with me to the Asian market, so I don’t forget things- as it’s easy to get sidetracked and distracted there at times. Prices are generally less expensive than at a grocery store, so I stock up on staples like coconut milk, rice wine vinegar, tofu, fresh turmeric, lemongrass and sesame seeds. The list is really helpful.
Read the recipe all the way through to get the general idea. Its seems like a lot of steps, but it’s really not hard or complicated. The prep takes 20 minutes, the cooking takes 10 minutes. It’s a fast meal really–but the key is to have everything ready, before you start the wok. If you don’t have a wok, use a large skillet- turning the heat down a bit.
The first step is to soak the rice noodles. Fill a large bowl with lukewarm water, break the noodles in half and soak the noodles for 20 minutes. Time this. When 20 minutes are up, they will be bendy but not soft. Don’t worry that they are not soft, they will get soft in the wok. While the noodles are soaking get your other ingredients ready.
In a medium bowl, mix the tamarind, fish sauce, warm water and brown sugar ( or palm sugar) .
Cut extra firm tofu, that’s been patted down hard with paper towels, into thin strips.
Heat peanut oil (or vegetable oil), on high heat. Swirl it around the edges of the wok, coating it. When you begin to see smoke, crack the egg in the center. It will bubble and spatter. Add the tofu, radish and dried shrimp, around the edges of egg, stirring them constantly with a metal spatula, careful to keep the egg intact, for a minute, until they get golden. When the edges of the egg are golden brown, flip, and break it apart into a few pieces with the metal spatula, and then stir it all together, letting it brown up a bit, for another minute.
Add the noodles and bean sprouts –constantly stirring and flipping for one more minute. Add the prawns, peas, asparagus and tamarind sauce. Stir until the prawns are cooked through, the noodles are soft, and the liquid has evaporated, about 4 minutes. Add the scallions ( or garlic chives) and ½ of the peanuts.
And serve immediately, garnishing with lime, more peanuts, scallions ( or chives) , fresh bean sprouts and chili flakes.
2 T shredded salted radish (soaked in water)
2 T dried, toasted shrimp (medium or small)
¼ C tamarind concentrate
⅓ C palm sugar or brown sugar
3 T fish sauce
½ C water
½ C extra firm tofu
½ C scallions or garlic chives
1-2 C bean sprouts ( plus more for garnish)
8-10 medium shrimp- peeled and de-veined ( raw or cooked)
1 Cup fresh peas ( or snap peas, or snow peas,)
1 Cup asparagus ( or green beans, or mushrooms)
⅓ cup roasted chopped peanuts
1 lime- sliced for garnish
3 T peanut oil ( or vegetable oil)
toasted chili powder or chili flakes
1. Soak the rice noodles in a large bowl of lukewarm water for 20 minutes ( time this )
2. Soak the salted radish in a small bowl of lukewarm water for 10 minutes.
3. Toast the dried shrimp in a skillet until crispy, medium heat, 4 minutes, chop.
4. Mix tamarind concentrate, fish sauce, sugar and water in a small bowl, set aside.
5. Pat dry tofu with paper towels, pressing down to release water, and cut into 1inch long strips, ⅓ inch thick. ( see photo).
6. Chop scallions and peanuts, set aside. Slice limes.
7. Place tofu, salted shrimp and drained radish, next to stove, and have metal spatula handy. Drain the noodles, keep in the same bowl, placing the sprouts in the bowl with them. ( After 20 minutes, the noodles will still be somewhat firm but flexible– they will soften up in the wok- be sure to soak the entire 20 minutes.)
7. In a wok, heat oil on high heat until smoky. Swirl it around to coat sides. Add egg, and let it bubble and sizzle.
8. Still on high heat, add the tofu, radish and dried shrimp, around and next to the egg, stirring everything but the egg. When the edges of the egg crisp, flip the egg over and break up into a few pieces with the metal spatula, then stir and flip everything together, stirring until the tofu starts to brown- about 1-2 minutes.
9. Add the drained noodles and bean sprouts, and stir constantly, flipping the noodles continuously for 1 minute.
10. Add the shrimp, peas, asparagus and the tamarind sauce into the wok, and keep stirring and flipping, until the shrimp are cooked thru, the noodles softened, and the liquid evaporated, about 3-4 minutes. Toss in the scallions and ½ the peanuts. Serve immediately, garnishing with lime wedges, fresh bean sprouts and chili flakes.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 3-4