Tuesday and Thusrday evenings Yannick plays badminton and ends up having a caloric dinner (happily prepared by me) afterwards between 9 and 10pm. Often while he's off at the court, I would take a mental note of the fridge's contents and perhaps browse TasteSpotting or FoodGawker for some inspiration for possible things that I could make in reasonable time.
Unless he makes a special request for something in particular, which is not often but pleases me all the same. That means I would be preparing something he actually looks forward to, and not just any surprise (surprisingly good or surprisingly, hm..., interesting) dish. Well, today is one of those days, and his request for his after badminton dinner was Pad Thai. And so, as usually for Pad Thai, I dashed off to the neighborhood grocery store earlier in the day to pick up the required missing fresh ingredients namely limes, beansprouts, tofu, chives or green onions, prawns, and donuts and chocolate.
I would start just about an hour before he's back, and the first thing to do was to soak the dried noodles in cold water. Except... there was no noodles to be found! My first thought was poor Yannick. And then my second thought, after beating myself up furiously, was what dish I could make with these ingredients that would be more exciting than stir-fry prawns with beansprouts and tofu and the rest, a dish preferably with a Thai and/or noodly theme.
And Thai-inspired and noodly it was! The little light bulbs with the picture of stir-fry spaghetti in Thai roasted chili paste (in Thai, Nam Prik Pao) went blink blink blink in my head.
The dish turned out wonderfully, all parties satisfied. And hey, there's always tomorrow for Pad Thai.
Spaghetti in Thai Roasted Chili Paste Recipe
1/4 cup diced extra-firm tofu
2 inch carrot, sliced
2 inch zucchini, sliced
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons Thai roasted chili paste
1 1/2 cup cooked spaghetti
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon lime juice
3 green onions, sliced into long strips
1) Cook spaghetti
2) Fry tofu until brown in oil over medium heat. Remove tofu from wok to a plate.
3) Fry carrot and zucchini slices in a little of oil until almost soft, then add prawns and garlic. When the prawns are cooked, move this ensemble to the tofu plate.
4) Fry the chili paste in 2 tablespoons of oil for about 30-60 seconds, then add noodles, sugar, lime juice, fish sauce, and stir to mix.
5) Make a big hole in the middle (push the noodles to the edge of the wok) and add 2 tablespoons of oil, and then crack in the egg. Stir to break the egg yolk and leave it until the egg is almost cooked, but still a little liquidy.
6) Fold in the noodle, and add the tofu ensemble and stir to mix everything.