This blog post also is available in German.
Asian food is one of my absolute favorite ones, Thai food included. Who agrees? I mean come on, how can somebody not like the Asian cuisine? It`s a total mystery to me. Anyways, I love the Asian, especially the Thai kitchen, due to it`s versatility and of course because it`s super yummmm. And that`s why today I created a steaming plate of delicious vegan pad thai for you guys. I guess by now everybody is in the know of this famous noodle dish, as you can literally find it on every Thai restaurant menu. Traditional ingredients are rice noodles – the start of the dish -, a sweet-sour and spicy sauce made of garlic, tamarind, fish sauce and chili, scrambled egg mixed with the noodles and peanuts, fresh cilantro, mung sprouts, scallions and lime as a garnish. Everything is tossed and quickly seared in a wok and that`s the whole magic to this delicious thai dish.
Obviously that`s not the vegan friendly version, but no worries, this dish is an easy one to veganize. Keep on reading and I`ll tell you more about it below. But I wouldn`t be me if I didn`t change something about the original dish. Guess what? You`re just to find out in a second.
The Asian cuisine generally is known for their tendency of rice dishes. If it`s not rice, it`s rice noodles. Both ingredients are very popular garnish for Asian food. Same goes for pad thai, which namely is a national noodle dish in Thailand. So if you`re trying to keeping it low on calories or follow a low carb diet, you`re standing in front of a small problem. But here`s the solution coming right up… Use veggie noodles instead. Noodles made out of vegetables are healthier, provide you with much-needed vitamins, minerals and trace elements, help you to eat the required amount of vegetables per day and are low in calories. All you need to make your own noodles from vegetables is a spiralizer. You might ask yourself if this kitchen helper is necessary? Well of course it`s not, but it`s such a life saver and I wouldn`t give it away at any price anymore. So yes, it`s worth every penny and you`ll love your spiralizer if you get the right type. Yep, that`s the catch! Spiralizing can be frustrating if you got the wrong model or don`t consider a few things. So that`s what I would like to talk about today, just to make sure your spiralizing will be a success
Which spiralizer to get?
First of all everybody has it`s own preferences and wallet, which will influence your decision. I started with a so-called sharpener (here`s one of these), but wasn`t pleased at all of the results it was giving me. This type of spiralizer works great with long veggies, for example carrots, cucumbers or zucchini, but gives really bad results with round vegetables. Also it can get very tricky if the vegetable is too big to fit into the opening of the sharpener. Most of the time it didn`t work out for me and my vegetables looked like grated instead of being beautiful noodles. Not to mention the effort of strength you have to use and the huge amount of waste this sort of spiralizer produces.
The lovely Diana recommended the following model, which I had already layed my eyes on before. This spiralizer is a total different experience to the other one and I`m not payed to say that, as I bought it with my own money. Finally I was able to produce beautiful looking noodles from all sorts of vegetables where I had struggled before. Spiralizers like that one master almost all the vegetables and even some fruits. So far I`ve only experienced difficulties with thin carrots. But with those one you can still get out your peeler or keep a sharpener as a second option.
If you have the money and are willing to invest you can of course invest into an electric spiralizer. Just make sure you have space for one of these in your kitchen.
Which vegetables are suitable for spiralizing & What to consider when spiralizing?
Rule of thumb; use fresh produce. The fresher your produce the better the outcome. If you keep vegetables for several days in the fridge they`ll become soft, which makes it harder to spiralize them. Soft veggies can break off easily and aren`t that robust. During winter root and tuber vegetables are very suitable to make noodles. Try cucumbers and zucchini during summer time. Who likes experimenting can also give fruits a try. Here a short list of ingredients, which work great for the spiralizer:
- broccoli (only the thick stem)
- yellow beetroot
- carrots (all different colors)
- celeriac root
- butternut squash
- sweet potatoes
Make sure to quickly further process fruits and vegetables that tend to oxidate. If you like you can also serve a mix of regular pasta and vegetable noodles. Just be aware of the different cooking time of both ingredients. Noodles made from veggies only need to be seared or steamed shortly to be ready. Always cook the pasta first and right before it`s ready add the veggie noodles.
That`s basically the whole magic you need to know to create these healthy treats. The best thing is just to get out your spiralizer and start trying out different things. But just to assure your first attempt will be a success, I created this delicious vegan pad thai for you. Served with freshly made sweet potato noodles. Just for the record, this is not a low carb recipe, as sweet potatoes are packed with carbs. But in case you`d rather have a low carb meal, use carrots instead.
Veganizing a pad thai is actually super easy. Use soy sauce instead of fish sauce and you`re good to go. And who needs the egg anyway? If you ask me it`s so not necessary. In case you can`t life with that and you want your pad thai to be as originally as the traditional one, use firm tofu, crumble and mix it with ground turmeric, season with a little bit kala namak and there you have your vegan egg. With a little bit of time aside you can make a vegan fish sauce by infusing soy sauce with nori leaves.
Did I already mentioned how quickly and easy pad thai is done? No?! Then it`s about time. Pad Time literally doesn`t take more than 30 minutes to be prepared, which makes it the perfect meal for a short lunch break or a quick dinner after a long workday. And who can resist to all these shades of different flavors? There you have the mild sweetness of the tamarind, the acidity of the lime, combined with the salty soy sauce and the hotness of the chili. A heavenly combo and that`s why the recipe is following straight ahead.
Read you soon,
Vegan Pad Thai with Spoodles
- 50 g peanuts organic
- 2 sweet potatoes organic
- 1 tbsp sesame oil organic
- 100 g mung sprouts organic
- 1 scallion organic
- a bunch of cilantro organic
Sauce for Pad Thai
- 2 tsp tamarin paste
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 red chili organic
- 1 tbsp lime juice organic
- 2 garlic cloves organic
- Heat a frying pan, add peanuts, roast them until they start to turn brown. Pour in a mortar with pestel and start grinding. There should be still intact peanuts as well as grind ones. Put aside.
- Peel garlic cloves and press them through a garlic press. Rinse off chili and thinly slice it. Mix all the sauce ingredients together
- Peel sweet potatoes and spiralize them.
- Heat oil in a pan, add spoodles and sear them for 1 to 2 minutes. Add sauce and mix well.
- Rinse of mung sprouts, add them to the pan next to the sweet potato noodles and sear them for one minute without mixing with the sweet potato.
- Serve spoodles on a plate, arrange sprouts aside and garnish with peanuts, cilantro and scallion rings.