Copyright Thomas Saaristo  All Rights Reserved
Shrimp Pad Thai
Authentic flavors and a homemade sauce will remind you of your favorite noodle house

The term stir-fry here means to add the ingredients to a hot wok with hot oil, let the food
cook for 20 to 30 seconds then stir the ingredients around quickly and deftly, 20 to 30
seconds more. Continue to let them cook and stir-fry until the ingredients are just finished
cooking. If you are not adept at using the interior sides of the wok to hold food that has
been cooked, remove the cooked food with a slotted spoon, to keep the hot oil in the
wok, to a plate and keep warm, in a low oven or under foil


For the sauce
1 tablespoon tamarind paste
1/4 cup chicken stock
3 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon chili sauce, then to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white or green or rainbow peppercorns
3 tablespoons brown sugar

For the stir-fry
8 ounces Thai rice noodles
2 boneless skinless chicken thighs, diced into half inch pieces
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3 tablespoons canola oil
16 medium fresh raw shrimp, shelled
4 scallions sliced on the bias, white and green parts kept separate
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon freshly minced ginger
1 fresh red or green chili, finely sliced, then more to taste
1 egg
2 cups bean sprouts

For final plating and service
Handful fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1/3 cup crushed honey roasted peanuts
Lime wedges


For the sauce
Whisk together the ingredients for the sauce in a medium bowl

Note: if your tamarind paste is very thick, add the 1 tablespoon; if thin/runny, add 1 1/2

Looking for a very strong tasting flavor, sour-sweet at first, followed by salty and spicy

Sauce can be made up to 1 month in advance. Covered with plastic wrap or in a jar with a
tight-fitting lid kept under refrigeration

Tip: Double or triple the ingredients for the sauce to have sauce on the side and for future
Shrimp Pad Thai. Better than anything you can buy in a bottle

For the stir-fry
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Turn off the heat and add noodles. Soak 3 to 4 minutes,
or until noodles are limp. Drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Set aside

Toss diced chicken in 1 tablespoon soy sauce and set aside

Heat wok over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Add canola oil and carefully swirl to gloss
the interior of the pan. Add the white part of the scallion, garlic, ginger, and chili. Stir-fry 1

Add chicken and stir-fry 2 minutes, or until opaque. Add shrimp and continue stir-frying 2
to 3 more minutes or until shrimp are pink and plump

Remove the shrimp mixture to a plate and cover with foil

Stir fry the egg, 30 seconds to 1 minute

Add the noodles and drizzle over 1/3 of the sauce. Using 2 utensils and a gentle turning
motion, stir-fry everything together. Keep heat between medium and high - you want it
hot enough to cook the noodles, but not so hot that they will burn. Add a ladle full of
sauce every 30 seconds to 1 minute as the noodles absorb the sauce. Continue stir-frying
until sauce is gone and noodles begin to get sticky and glossy but remain toothsome (al
dente), 5 to 7 minutes

Turn off the heat. Fold in bean sprouts


Add more fish sauce for flavor or salt
Add more tamarind and a squeeze of fresh lime to reduce salt or sweet
Add more fresh chilies for spice

Tip: Note the addition of the flavorings you like and add them to your sauce recipe the
next time

Stir everything together thoroughly

For final plating and service
Turn the noodles out onto a serving platter. Add the shrimp mixture evenly over the top.
Garnish with green onion, nuts and cilantro

Serve with lime wedges


If making more than 8 ounces of noodles, double the sauce recipe

Avoid making more than 12 ounces of noodles at a time, as it is difficult to turn that many
noodles and have them cook properly