Shrimp Pad Thai

I’m a little late this week posting my latest culinary creations because I spent the weekend skiing in the Pyrenees. Before you say, “oh, fabulous!”, let me tell you that the average temperature this past weekend was between 5 and -5 degrees Fahrenheit. Luckily, the hotel had a spa for some relaxation after a long day of freezing my butt off…and skiing.

Also, hot chocolate…

Not a lot of snow, a lot of cold! But still a great time!

Anyway… Shrimp Pad Thai. One of my favorites and I’ve never made it…with the exception of the boxed Trader Joe’s version. But, oh do I miss the availability of endless options of foods from around the world. Asian food is sometimes a bit intimidating because usually recipes call for a million sauces and ingredients, but this is a super easy recipe with ingredients that even I could find (at the corner store that’s owned and run by a Chinese family and has a little corner reserved for Asian ingredients – it was there that I found rice noodles, teriyaki sauce, and sesame oil).

I made this recipe twice because I added a bunch of veggies and ended up over-cooking them the first time while allowing the sauce to reduce, so the second time I sauteed the veggies and then set them aside while the sauce reduced and then added everything back in. This way they come out crunchy and add texture to the soft chewy noodles. The great thing about a recipe like this is that you can add any kind of vegetables and/or protein you like (I used soy bean sprouts, carrots, onions and shrimp). Also, it’s so quick and easy – perfect for a fast lunch or dinner!

Here’s the recipe (bonus: it’s from Cooking Light!):

  • 8 oz uncooked spaghetti (or rice noodles, if possible)
  • 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 2 tbsp hot water
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1/4 tsp Sriracha (or hot chili powder – if you have neither, a pinch of cayenne pepper or pepper flakes)
  • 2 tsp dark sesame oil
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 pound peeled shrimp (or your preferred protein e.g. chicken, tofu…)
  • 4 cups snow peas (or any combo of veggies that you prefer)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/3 cup chopped dry roasted peanuts (optional)
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges

Combine teriyaki sauce, water, peanut butter, and sriracha in a small bowl, mixing with a whisk or fork.

Boil a large pot of water (no salt or oil) and add rice noodles or pasta. Cook according to package directions.

Heat sesame oil in a large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add garlic, sauté one minute. Add any veggies that need to cook longer (e.g. carrots, onion, red pepper…) and sauté 3 minutes. Add shrimp, sauté 2 minutes or until almost cooked through. Transfer vegetable and shrimp mixture to a plate.

Add teriyaki sauce, water, peanut butter, and sriracha mix to pan and cook over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes, until sauce thickens.

Once the sauce has thickened a bit, turn off the flame, add noodles and vegetable mixture back into pan and toss until evenly coated. Sprinkle chopped peanuts and cilantro on top. Serve with a lime wedge.

*Recipe adapted from CookingLight.com (link)

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