Pad Thai is one of the most well known dishes in Thailand. The famous taste is sour, sweet, spicy and saucy all surrounding chewy rice noodle. Traditionally one of the most important ingredients other than tamarind and palm sugar is fish sauce, but today we’re making it vegetarian. It can also be vegan friendly (just leave out the egg). We’ll substitute the fish sauce with thin soy sauce and salt instead. Cook this vegetarian pad thai recipe for your friends and dazzle them with your cooking skills.
It’s very important to choose thin soy sauce for this recipe, not soy sauce. The main difference, other than colour, is that thin soy sauce has a lighter flavour with a hint of sweetness. The smell won’t overpower the tamarind and palm sugar which is should be quite potent in authentic pad thai. You should be able to buy pad thai sauce in any good Asian supermarket, but it’s not too difficult to make your own sauce. Click here to see the recipe for my aromatic pad thai sauce. If you’d like to make your it yourself, make quite a big batch as the sauce can be kept in the fridge for up to 2 months – trust me you’re going to want to make this dish again and again.
What makes pad thai popular is probably the simplicity and humble look, but full flavor and flexibility. If you can’t find small rice noodle. You can also use glass noodle, fried wonton sheets or even no noodles at all, you can simply add more veg and serve with fried tofu to add some protein.
Vegetarian Pad Thai (ผัดไทยมังสวิรัติ)
Vegetarian Pad Thai
- 2 tbsp of vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp of slice shallot
- 2 tbsp of shredded sweet radish
- 1 egg (optional – leave out for a totally vegan recipe)
- Handful of garlic chives
- 100-200 g of rice noodle
- Handful of beansprouts
- ¼ block of hard tofu
- 2-3 tbsp of pad thai sauce (can add more or less depends on the concentration of your sauce)
- Crushed peanut ( for garnish)
- Chilli flake (for garnish)
- Lime (for garnish)
- Slice the shallot thinly and roughly chop the sweet radish if it’s too long.
- Rinse and soak the bean sprouts, until you use them (so they won’t wilt or turn black)
- Cut the garlic chives into sections around 1 inch long,
- Cut the tofu into approx ½ inch cubes
- Soak your noodles in water before cooking for around 10-15 mins.
- Put a wok on high heat, add the oil, shallots and sweet radish. Fry until fragrant and translucent.
- Add the egg, gently stir to break it up as it’s cooking.
- Add tofu and fry until slightly brown.
- Push all cooked ingredient to one side of the pan then add noodles along with a splash of water to help soften them. Fry until the noodles are getting soft
- Add the bean sprouts and garlic chives to the noodles. Stir everything together when the bean sprouts and noodles are starting to get translucent. If it gets too dry, add a splash of water to help the cooking process.
- Add the pad thai sauce. Stir fry until the sauce reduces slightly and then you are done!
- Serve with a crushed peanuts, chilli flake and a wedge of lime.
* If you prefer your vegetarian pad thai saltier, feel free at add the thin soy sauce or soy sauce. It’s also popular to eat with a raw bean sprout for some crunch. For the sauce, you can adjust the amount as your liking.