Wednesday, May 04, 2016

No Noodle Pad Thai

I had the flu two weeks ago and my low-carb lifestyle went to hell-in-a-handbasket as far as carb avoidance goes. When I'm sick, I want comfort food! That meant pizza, chips, know, all the things I've been avoiding for the past 5 months.

But hubby and I are back on track this week and this No Noodle Pad Thai from Cookie + Kate was just the trick to keep us going:

Photo from Cookie + Kate
I have to admit I was a little skeptical when I found this recipe on Cookie + Kate. I've tried a few vegetable noodle recipes (aka "zoodles") that were just - meh. But this one caught my eye.

It's funny, as this original recipe is from Green Kitchen Travels: Healthy Vegetarian Food Inspired by Our Adventures by David Frenkiel and Luise Vindahl. Cookie + Kate tweaked this recipe for their tastes and I tweaked it again for my tastes! I love how a recipe continues to evolve and change.

Cookie + Kate's recipe calls for raw veggie noodles, but I prefer to cook my veggies, drain, then toss in the sauce. I couldn't find daikon radish when I made this, but when I make this again, I will not cook the radish and add it in fresh at the end. I think the radish would give this a great crunch and spice and cooking it would ruin that. I also didn't like the not-very-fresh available bean sprouts I saw at the store, so I didn't add those either. Again, I'd probably add those fresh. Oh, and I did't have tofu either....I know, right? I basically bastardized this recipe. Anyway, it was still amazing! It was so good, there was none left over for pictures!

The only other change I made from Cookie + Kate's recipe is I added a little fish sauce. I think this addition gives this dish a little more "umami-ness" as well as making it taste a little more Thai.

No Noodle Pad Thai
Recipe Modified from: Cookie + Kate

¾ pound daikon radish, peeled and spiralized
4 medium carrots, peeled and spiralized
½ pound zucchini (or replace with an additional ½ pound bean sprouts)
½ pound (8 ounces) bean sprouts
Olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
4 green onions, finely sliced (white and green parts)
*12 to 14 ounces organic extra-firm tofu, drained and very gently squeezed of excess moisture
1 small handful cilantro leaves, chopped, plus extra for serving
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, preferably black, plus extra for serving
4 small wedges of lime, for serving
Chopped, salted peanuts for garnish (optional)

Peanut Sauce

½ cup peanut butter or almond butter
¼ cup lime juice
2 tablespoons tamari or other soy sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1 pinch red pepper flakes
About 3 tablespoons water, to thin

*Note: I did not use tofu in my recipe and I cooked the zucchini and carrot noodles. If you want to have this raw, then that's fine too.

For cooked "noodles" - Preheat skillet  over med-high heat with olive oil. When heated, add minced garlic and green onions, and saute for about 1 minute. Add zucchini and carrot noodles to pan and toss with a pair of tongs. Continue to toss and cook using the tongs for about 5-7 minutes, until noodles start to soften. Remove from heat and drain liquid from pan. Set aside.

Mix all ingredients for the peanut sauce and stir in/toss with the still warm noodles. Add diakon radish, bean sprouts, sesame seeds, cilantro, and tofu (if using). Serve warm with chopped peanuts as a garnish on top.

To serve with tofu - slice and halve your slab of tofu lengthwise through the middle so you have two large, 1-inch thick slabs. Stack the slabs on top of each other and slice them into 4 columns lengthwise, then turn the tofu and slice across the columns to make ¼-inch wide squares of tofu. Gently transfer the tofu to the serving bowl.

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