We had Thai food for dinner tonight. We had rice paper rolls, though with the Vietnamese fish dipping sauce, and pad si iew, accompanied by Thai iced tea. Then for dessert we had mango with coconut sticky rice. I only took a picture of the pad si iew though.
Pad Si Iew is probably my favorite Thai noodle stir fry. There is one basic recipe that is floating around online, so I don't know the originator of this recipe, but the recipe I've posted here is based on it. Here
is one of these recipes. I have used basically the same ingredient quantities except that I added some regular soy sauce to the stir fry sauce to add a bit more saltiness and have included how to make the dish with dried rice noodles, since they are easier to acquire and keep on hand. I usually use the widest dried "banh pho" (Vietnamese rice noodles for soup) I can find.
The key to the taste is in using sweet dark soy sauce. It is thick and syrupy and is part of what gives pad si iew its sweetness. Healthy Boy is a common brand, it looks like this
If you do not have palm sugar, brown sugar also works, though palm sugar does have a distinctive taste.
I have written the recipe using beef but you can use any other meat if desired. Tofu can be used and fish sauce substituted for more soy sauce for a vegetarian dish.
I have listed the dish as serving 3 but if you have appetizers or any sides it can serve 4.
3—5 garlic cloves, minced
1 T fresh ginger, ground
1 T green onions (white portion), chopped
1 T shallots, chopped
1 T rice wine
1 T fish sauce
3 T sweet dark soy sauce
2 T oyster sauce
1 T palm sugar
1 T cornstarch, mixed in 1 T water
1 tsp sesame oil
1 T chiles, thinly sliced (optional)
Stir Fry Sauce:
1 T fish sauce
2 T sweet dark soy suace
2 T soy sauce
2 T oyster sauce
1 T palm sugar
8 oz beef, thinly sliced
8 oz wide rice noodles, dry or fresh
1/2 lb chinese broccoli (or regular)
2 T green onions (green portion), chopped
Mix together the marinade and marinate 8 oz. of thinly sliced beef for an hour. If you double this recipe the above amount of marinade works just as fine for a pound of meat, though I do double the aromatics, just not the sauce. For 8 oz. of meat I often use a little less than the above listed amounts.
Mix together the stir-fry sauce (this I would double if I'm making a double recipe).
Cut up the broccoli into 1-2 inch lengths. If using Chinese broccoli, steam the thicker stems for a few minutes or blanch them. You may want to slice the stems in half if they are very thick. For regular broccoli steam both the stems and florets. You want the vegetables to be mostly cooked to your liking, and they will finish in the stiry fry. The leafy portion of the Chinese broccoli does not need any cooking beforehand and will cook in the stir fry.
If using dry noodles, place the noodles in a large bowl and pour hot to boiling water to cover it. Let it soak for 20-30 minutes. It'll get soft but won't be cooked all the way. You can also cook the noodles in a pot on the stove like you would pasta if you want to do this more quickly, but you have to be careful not to let the noodles cook all the way or you'll end up with mushier noodles in your stir-fry. You want the noodles to be in a state where they still need to absorb more liquid so when you stir fry, they absorb the sauce. If using fresh, they are ready to go as is, unless they came in big sheets that you have to cut into noodles.
Heat a wok or large skillet and heat up some oil until hot. Toss in your beef and stir it around to brown. Let it cook partway but not completely, since you'll be adding more stuff (I often do cook all the way, remove it, and add it back at the end so as not to overcrowd the pan). Add the broccoli, then noodles, then lower the heat to medium (here is where I diverge from what the restaurants probably do since my stove does not get hot enough to cook everything in a flash, so I go with a lower heat since everything will be cooking longer). Keep stirring. Stir in the egg and the stir fry sauce. Keep stirring the mixture, which can be a little difficult if you don't have a big pan like a wok but are using a skillet (I believe in a restaurant they would be cooking each individual serving portion separately). In five minutes or maybe a little more, the noodles should have absorbed enough of the sauce so that they are soft. Keep tasting until the noodles reach the proper texture. You can also adjust for seasoning, adding more of anything if you think it is needed. The tricky part is not overcooking so that the noodles turn to mush and it is also important to have enough sauce that the noodles remain nice and wet. Add more sauce if needed or even a bit of water if things are salty enough. This adjusting takes a bit of practice.
Recombine everything if you took out the beef. Garnish with the chopped green portion of the green onions.