I swear this is the last Lean in 15 recipe coming up for a while. I have made this a few times because Mr O loves it and although the sauce is very simple it is delicious… it will also stink out your kitchen because that’s how fish sauce rolls!
Every now and then I throw random stuff together in the kitchen and then think, I really should write this down before I forget it! I have called this “kinda Thai” because I used a a few typical Thai flavours but I can’t imagine it’s in any way authentic but it was very tasty as well as being a light and healthy weeknight supper. Unfortunately the photography was a bit questionable because we were so ready to eat it!
So I have a new kitchen toy. It’s called a spiralizer and you can use it to turn firm vegetables like courgettes into thin strands that resemble spaghetti and then eat that in place of pasta to up the veg in your meals (and cut carbs if you’re into that kind of thing). I love courgettes so I started my experiments with the spiralizer with them, which turned out to be delicious.
Mr O and I have a favourite Thai restaurant near my old office that we used to visit regularly to commemorate one of our first dates. Although I am normally very eager to experiment with flavours I always have the same thing in this restaurant because it’s that delicious and that dish is Pad Thai. Now that I have moved to a new building it’s a little out of the way so I wanted to have a go at making my own Pad Thai so I tried out this recipe in the Leon quick meals recipe book I got for my birthday. I don’t think it’s wonderfully authentic and it doesn’t quite measure up to my restaurant favourite but it’s still very, very tasty and super quick for a weekday supper.
Easy Pad Thai
Adapted from Leon Fast Suppers
150g rice noodles
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
150g raw, peeled prawns
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 handfuls bean sprouts
2 spring onions, trimmed and chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons fish sauce
Juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons caster sugar
1/4 teaspoon chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon tamarind paste
For the garnish
2 spring onions, trimmed and chopped
1 tablespoon fresh coriander leaves
1/2 tablespoon, unsalted roasted peanuts roughly chopped
2 lime wedges
Soak the rice noodles in warm water according to the package instructions. There should be a timing for if you are using them for a stir fry. Go with that. They should be just softening. Drain, rinse and set aside.
Heat the oil in a wok over a high heat. Add the garlic and stir fry quickly until just turning golden. Add the prawns and stir fry for a minute or two. Then add the noodles and stir through before adding the eggs, bean sprouts, spring onion and peanuts, stirring well after each addition.
When everything is well combined add the fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, chilli powder and tamarind paste. Stir thoroughly and then serve immediately topped with the garnish and with lime wedges on the side.
I have adapted this recipe from a Jamie Oliver 15 Minute Meal. I have changed the method somewhat because his version is mental and requires you to have seven arms and nerves of steel… two things I definitely don’t possess!
Hoi sin prawn and noodle bowls
2 tablespoons shelled raw peanuts
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/2 a fresh red chilli
1 thumb sized piece of ginger, peeled
2 spring onions, trimmed
1 bunch fresh coriander
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
4 nests of egg noodles
200g raw, peeled prawns
4 tablespoons hoi sin sauce
2 tablespoons soya sauce
1 romain lettuce
1 punnet of cress
2 x 150g sirloin steaks, fat removed
1 tablespoon Chinese five-spice
2 tablespoons groundnut or sesame oil
250g oyster mushrooms, chopped
Boil your kettle and put a wok over a high heat. Put the peanuts and sesame seeds in the wok and toss often till golden. Set aside.
Put the chilli, ginger, spring onions and coriander in your food processor. Set aside.
Rub the steaks all over with salt, pepper and five-spice. Put a large frying pan over a high heat with half the ground nut or sesame oil. Add the steaks and cook to your liking, turning regularly gand adding the mushrooms after a minute. Remove to a board when done.
Pour the water from the kettle into a large lidded pot and put over a high heat with a little salt until boiling.
In the meantime put the wok back over the heat with the rest of the oil and the veg from the food processor. Add the garlic and toss for a minute.
By now your pot should be boiling so chuck in the noodles and replace the lid.
Add the prawns to the wok and toss for a minute. Add the hoi sin and soya sauces to the wok with the juice of a lime and cook till the prawns are almost done.
Use tongs to add the noodles directly to the wok and toss in. If it’s too sticky add a little cooking water.
Divide the noodles between four bowls. Poke a lettuce leaf into the side of each one with a half a radish. Sprinkle over the seeds, nuts and trimmed cress. Slice the steak into 1cm strips and divide amongst the bowls with the mushrooms. Serve with lime wedges.
Barring my fetish for cake (mmm… cake) most of the recipes I post tend to be on the healthier side, but every now and then a little indulgence is in order and this rich pasta dish does not disappoint. Definitely not for everyday eating but great for a special treat.
Creamy prawn and mushroom linguini
Adapted from chaosinthekitchen.com
120g uncooked linguini
6 tablespoons butter, divided
250g mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
120g light cream cheese
300g cooked, shelled prawns
Put your linguini on to cook in a pot of boiling, salted water.
While that’s cooking, put a large pan over a medium heat and add two tablespoons of the butter. When this is melted add the mushrooms and sauté until soft and brown. Season with a little salt and pepper and set aside.
In the same pan melt the remaining butter. Add the garlic, herbs and cream cheese and stir over a medium heat until mixed together. Don’t worry if it looks a bit weird at this stage.
Add a ladle full (about 2/3 cup) of the boiling water from the pasta pot to your pan and stir till the sauce is smooth.
Add the mushrooms to the sauce and simmer for 8 mins. Then add the prawns and simmer for 2 more minutes.
Mix the pasta and sauce together to coat and serve.
Serves 2 – 4