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My take on Pad Kee Mao (drunken noodles)

Posted Sep 01 2008 7:09pm

If you haven't noticed, I'm really feeling Thai and other Asian foods lately. It's hot, they're fairly quick, and I love the heat of the foods. I love to sweat from the inside, rather than the other way around. I sent Alex out to get some rice noodles for my Thai-style meatballs and peanut sauce dinner, and he came back with the regular fettuccine type as well as some flat, wide noodles, they're about 2x2 square. I love chow fun and I recently had pad kee mao at a Thai place in Amherst when I was visiting my mom. It was killer spicy, but so good. I decided to make this quick for dinner. Alex thought it might have been one of the best dinners yet. But we all know that's something I hear all the time. Pad Kee Mao
1 package tofu, pressed between plates with paper towels to dry it
oil for frying
2 cloves garlic
2 Thai chili peppers (I used jalapeno and banana peppers but it would be better with these)
1 t grated ginger
about 1/2 c Thai basil, sliced thin ( I mixed with regular basil since I didn't have enough Thai)
sliced vegetables of your choice - I used 1/2 onion, shitake mushrooms, and a yellow pepper
1/3 c soy sauce
2 T fish sauce
1 T brown sugar
2 T water
2 T rice vinegar
1 package broad rice noodles (or your choice of noodles, but I love the wide ones)
cilantro, chopped

Put a pot of water on to boil (with enough water to cover your noodles in a bowl). Cut your tofu into cubes, pat dry, and heat about an inch of oil until it shimmers. Carefully drop in the tofu, only a bit at a time, and then stand back because it's going to splatter. Let cook, stirring once or twice to make sure the tofu isn't sticking, for about 3 minutes until the tofu is browned. Drain on paper towels and repeat with the rest of the tofu, in batches until all the tofu is fried. When your water comes to a boil, pour it over the noodles and cover, let sit for 5-10 minutes until the noodles are soft. Drain. Cook the chilis, garlic and ginger in 1 T oil (preferably in a wok, but I don't have one) until fragrant, then add your vegetables. Cook until softened, then add drained noodles and tofu. Stir together soy sauce, sugar, fish sauce, and some extra chili sauce if you want it extra spicy. (I did). Stir together, if it looks like you need some more add more. Add water and rice vinegar, stirring. Taste, adjust if you need more sugar or chili or whatever. Stir in basil, let cook 1 minute, then take off the heat. Serve with cilantro.
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