Thursday, January 21, 2010

Eric's Kitchen in Jersey City: Tofu & Shrimp Pad Thai

This was my first attempt at cooking either tofu or pad thai. I will say from the start that I wasn't particularly thrilled with the results but I think the biggest mistake I made was not reading the label of the sauce I bought. Basically I needed 2 jars of thai kitchen peanut sauce for the amount of noodles that I had and I only used one. If I made this again, I'd probably try to make the sauce from scratch and make a lot more of it.

1 Package Thai Kitchen rice noodles
1 Jar Thai Kitchen peanut sauce (better to use 2 if going this route)
1 red pepper, minced
1 medium vidalia onion, minced
1 package of straw mushrooms
1 handful of chopped cilantro
1 package extra firm tofu
1 lb. jumbo shrimp

I'll start with the tofu since this was the most interesting part to me, having never cooked it before. I took some advice from Alton Brown's 'Good Eats' and dried the tofu by wrapping it loosely with paper towels and placing some cans of baked beans on top to utilize the weight and drain the tofu. After that sat for 20 minutes or so and seemed less damp, I cubed it and then dredged it with egg whites, wheat flour and bread crumbs. I then pan fried the cubes in some olive oil to give it a little crunch. I do realize this kind of defeats the purpose of making healthy tofu but I figured, hey, at least we're cooking tofu for the first time! Baby steps...

I cooked the shrimp in olive oil, garlic, chopped cilantro and a little lemon juice. I like to cook them in the shells and shell them after cooking as I find they stay more tender this way and near impossible to overcook them unless you're really not paying attention.

On to the sauce (which was mostly from a jar). I sauteed the straw mushrooms, onion and minced red peppers with some garlic in olive oil and added them to the peanut sauce. I also shelled a cup or so of peanuts and crushed them with the back of a wooden spoon. These helped the sauce immensely.

In the end I served this with a slice of lemon and some sauteed snow peas. I have to say both the shrimp and tofu were excellent but the noodles needed more sauce for sure. Maybe someday I will try to follow this up with some homemade sauce instead!

Here's Sasha's versions of chicken and vegan pad thai

1 comment:

  1. I like how you prepared the Tofu. I am making my tofu pad thai (with my sauce) later this week again, but am going to try your technique on the tofu with panko bread crumbs.


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