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How To Give Pad Thai A Healthy Makeover

05/26/2014 08:23 EDT | Updated 07/26/2014 05:59 EDT
Carolyn Berry

Pad Thai, Thailand's most famous noodle dish, is the perfect balance of salty, sour, sweet, and spicy. It's really tough to beat!

When I go out for Thai food, I always order it. But after thoroughly enjoying every bite...crumb...speck on the plate, I usually end up with a stomach ache and am guzzling water for the rest of the day a result of the rich, creamy sauce and mounds of sodium. That is why pad Thai is one of my favourite food makeovers!

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First, I only used a very small amount of oil (a bit for sautéing the onions and garlic, and a bit for the sauce). I used brown rice noodles instead of white rice noodles, and of course my favourite trick: I added plenty of vegetables!

You can swap the shrimp or tofu for a different protein like chicken or eggs. And those who can't tolerate gluten would just need to modify the sauce, as the noodles are naturally gluten free.

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Ingredients:

For the sauce:

1 tbsp fish sauce

3 tbsp rice vinegar

Juice of 1 lime

1 tbsp ketchup

2 tbsp brown sugar

1 tbsp sesame oil

1 tbsp grated gingeroot

For the dish:

200 g (8 oz) dried wide brown rice noodles

2 tsp cooking oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

1 cup extra-firm tofu, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

10 uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined

2 large carrots, grated

2 medium zucchini, grated

2 cups bean sprouts

3 green onions, chopped

1/3 cup peanuts (unsalted)

1 fresh lime

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Directions:

-In a small bowl, combine all sauce ingredients and set aside

-Place rice noodles in a large bowl and cover with boiling water. Let soak for ~7 minutes. Drain. (Be careful not to over soak)

-Heat cooking oil in a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat

-Add onions and garlic and sauté until onions are tender

-Add tofu and shrimp. Cook shrimp until no longer pink. Cook tofu until each side is light brown and crispy

-Add noodles, sauce, carrots, zucchini, bean sprouts, and green onions

-Continue to sauté until mixture is hot

-Sprinkle with chopped peanuts, fresh lime juice, and serve

Source: Wealth of Health