This pad thai recipe is a favorite of mine. It's a little sweet, a little salty, and a little tangy. The tofu is nice and crispy, the noodles cooked to perfection. I like to add a large serving of crunchy bean sprouts and cabbage to my plate and top it all with a sprinkle of peanuts and a squeeze of lime juice.
Yesterday, I took a trip to the Asian grocery store, which is always a two-hour event - deciding on which fresh tofu to buy, choosing the best noodle stand to grab lunch, gawking at all the exotic fruit.
Before I left, my last night at home, I was inspired by a creation eaten two nights previous. A picnic meeting in the park with dietitians, confident that I would discover some flavorful treats, I was quickly drawn to this simple fresh salad. Bright and colorful. Each mouthful gushing with flavor as I slurp the noodles into my mouth.
makes 60 dumplings
16 oz firm tofu
2 tbsp sesame oil
1 large shallot, diced
2 garlic cloves, finely diced
14 small asparagus spears, thinly sliced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp honey
1/2 tsp salt
60 round wonton wrappers
DIPPING SAUCE INGREDIENTS
1 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
1 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1/2 tsp honey
1/4 tsp Sriracha Hot Sauce
Heat the sesame oil in a frying pan on low. Remove the tofu from the paper towel and crumble with your hands. Place into a frying pan with the shallots, garlic, asparagus, and carrots. Fry for 5 minutes, or until the carrots have softened. Drain any excess water. Add the rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, honey, salt and combine. Remove from heat and set to the side.
Remove the wonton wrappers from their package. Place a wrappers in your hand and then place 1 tbsp of filling inside. Here is a great tutorial demonstrating different dumpling folding techniques. Make sure to moisten the edges with water before folding, this will ensure that the filling does not spill out during steaming.
Place the dumplings onto a cutting board or tray and cover with a cloth to prevent them from drying out while you are making the rest. At this point you can place any extra dumplings into a ziplock bag and freeze them for up to 6 months.
You can use a bamboo steamer to steam the dumplings, or make your own steamer by using a small colander elevated inside a lidded pot or pan, with an inch of water in the bottom. Bring the water to a simmer and then cover.
Place a few dumplings into the steamer at one time, with enough room so that they do not touch. Steam for 6 - 8 minutes. Remove from the steamer and serve immediately.
To make the dipping sauce, combine the tamari sauce, lime juice, rice wine vinegar, honey, and Sriracha.