Kitchen Sink Pad Thai

pad-thai-recipe

This tofu Pad Thai is full of crunchy, vibrant vegetables, smothered in creamy peanut sauce, and bursting with flavor from sesame oil, lime, ginger, and basil. You can replace any of the vegetables in this recipe with what you have, hence the kitchen sink label. Apart from the cabbage, green onions, and ginger, I used the vegetables I found in the fridge. I believe that baby corn is a highly divisive vegetable (please weigh in with your thoughts on baby corn in the comments!), but I couldn’t resist. As you may have realized by now, everything about this dish is completely inauthentic. Maybe it’s no longer Pad Thai with the addition of peanut sauce, and chopsticks aren’t typically used in Thailand, but it’s still delicious.

I’ve had a lot of problems pan frying tofu in the past, resulting in soft, wiggly tofus with no crispy edges to be found. Isa wrote a great post on perfectly browned tofu over on the PPK blog, so check that out for some in-depth tofu know-how. The CliffNotes: use extra firm tofu, a metal spatula, and a hot, cast iron pan. Wait a few minutes before flipping the tofu so it forms a nice crispy skin. Ew, skin. A nice crispy exterior.

I’ve listed the recipe steps in the most efficient order. You’ll be working on each part of the dish simultaneously, but you won’t be watching the veggies get cold as the noodles cook. The tofu and marinade can be made ahead of time, but I made everything in short time with minimal waiting, so it can be done.

vegan-pad-thai

Pad Thai Recipe

Makes 4 servings

Tofu

1 lb block extra firm tofu
5-6 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
4-5 tablespoons soy sauce
Juice of 1 lime
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
Sriracha to taste
Freshly ground black pepper

Peanut sauce

1/4 cup peanut butter
2 tablespoons soy sauce
Juice of 1/2 lime
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1/3-1/2 cup coconut (canned) or other non-dairy milk
Sriracha to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
Chopped fresh basil (optional)

Veggies and noodles

1/2 lb rice noodles

1 medium onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 cup broccoli florets
4-5 green onions, sliced (save some for garnish)
1/2 small red cabbage, sliced or shredded (save some for garnish)
4-5 garlic cloves, chopped
1 can baby corn
Fresh basil
Lime juice

Garnish

Sliced green onions
Shredded cabbage
Basil leaves
Lime slices
Toasted sesame seeds or peanuts (optional)

Instructions

  1. Press tofu for at least 30 minutes. Start chopping veggies during this time.
  2. Make the marinade by mixing all the ingredients together in a small bowl. Slice the tofu into cubes or triangles, then pour the marinade over the tofu. Let the marinade soak into the tofu for at least 15 minutes.
  3. Prepare the peanut sauce by mixing all ingredients together in a small bowl. Set aside.
  4. If you haven’t already, finish chopping the veggies while the tofu marinades.
  5. Start boiling a pot of water for the noodles. Remove the tofu from the marinade and reserve the marinade.
  6. Prepare to cook the tofu in a wok, or large cast iron or frying pan. Coat the pan in a thin layer of peanut or vegetable oil and turn the heat to medium high. Add the tofu to the pan, careful not to burn yourself with oil splashes. Pan fry the tofu for 4-5 minutes on each side, flipping with a metal spatula, until crispy and golden. Transfer to a plate.
  7. Add the noodles to the boiling pot of water. Cook according to package directions. Stir fry the veggies while the noodles cook. Drain the cooked noodles, and pour the reserved tofu marinade over them. If the marinade doesn’t coat the noodles, add a few splashes of sesame oil, lime juice, or soy sauce.
  8. Pour a bit more oil in the pan, turn up the heat a little, and start stir frying the vegetables, starting with the onions. Once the onions begin to turn golden, add the celery, broccoli, green onions, cabbage, and garlic. De-glaze the pan with lime juice if  necessary. Stir fry until all the vegetables are soft and almost cooked through. Add the baby corn, then stir fry for one more minute. Turn off the heat and stir in fresh basil.

Assembly

Place a scoop of noodles on the plate and top with a couple scoops of veggies. Place a few pieces of tofu on top. Drizzle some peanut sauce over the veggies and tofu. Garnish with sliced green onions, shredded cabbage, and basil leaves. Squeeze a bit of lime on top and sprinkle with peanuts or sesame seeds, if using.

cucumber-vodka

I paired this dish with a simple cocktail of homemade cucumber vodka and ginger ale. More on the cucumber vodka next week!

3 thoughts on “Kitchen Sink Pad Thai

  1. Pingback: Vegan Pad Thai | Recipe ArchiveRecipe Archive

  2. Pingback: Infused vodka | Seitan Beats Your Meat

  3. I made this recipe last week, and it was absolutely delicious! I wrote a post about it on my blog, I’d love it if you could check it out. Thanks. :)

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