Rice noodles are a beloved ingredient from the Far East to Southeast Asia, with noodles ranging from thread-like vermicelli to wide sheets of rice noodle that are used to make popular southern Chinese dim sum dishes like prawns wrapped in chewy noodle. Fresh, frozen, and dried rice noodles are available in markets hypermarkets and grocery stores in Oman, and you can use this tasty ingredient in all kinds of preparations from stir-fries to soups. Some of my favourite preparations come from Thailand, the most globally iconic of which is Pad Thai. —[email protected]
Unknown. Popular in Thai, Chinese, Malaysian, and Southern Indian Cooking
Rice flour, with a bit of starch or tapioca for elasticity
Spring rolls (thin vermicelli), Pad Thai and Pho (Medium thick noodles), Pad See Ew (wide ribbons)
Cooking Rice Noodles
These delicate noodles can overcook fast. Prepare them by pouring boiling water over the noodles, then gently stir in the bowl to loosen the noodles every few minutes until they are limp. They should take less than 10 minutes to soften. Run under cold water to stop the cooking process and toss with a bit of oil to prevent sticking. If stir-frying, do not soften completely as they will soften further in the pan. If the noodles are destined for a soup, simply add them during the last few minutes of cooking, minutes before you serve the dish.
Pad Thai for Two
• 142g Pad Thai rice noodles
• 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
• 1 large egg, room temperature
• 6 medium shrimps, peeled, deveined (optional)
• 2 tablespoons slices pressed tofu (bean curd)
• 1 tablespoon sweet preserved shredded radish, rinsed, chopped into 2-3cm pieces
• 1 cup bean sprouts
• 5 tablespoons tamarind water (2.5 tablespoons tamarind paste mixed with 2.5 tablespoons water)
• 1 1/2 tablespoons (or more) Thai fish sauce
• 1 ½ tablespoons simple syrup, preferably made with palm sugar
• 4 garlic chives or scallions cut into 2-3cm pieces)
• 1/2 teaspoon ground dried Thai chillies, divided
• 2 tablespoons crushed roasted, unsalted peanuts, divided
• 2 lime wedges
• Place noodles in a large bowl; pour hot water over to cover. Let soak until tender but not mushy, 5–10 minutes. Drain; set aside.
• Heat vegetable oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add egg; stir until barely set, about 30 seconds. Add shrimp, if using. Cook, stirring, until shrimp and egg are almost cooked through, 2–3 minutes. Add tofu and radish; cook for 30 seconds. Add noodles and cook for 1 minute. Stir in sprouts. Add tamarind water, fish sauce, and simple syrup and stir-fry until sauce is absorbed by noodles and noodles are well coated, about 1 minute. Stir in chopped garlic chives. Add 1/4 teaspoon ground chillies and 1 tablespoon peanuts and toss well. Transfer to serving plates.
• Garnish with remaining 1/4 teaspoon ground chillies, 1 tablespoon peanuts, and lime wedges.
Recipe courtesy of Andy Ricker, author of PokPok: Food and Stories from the Streets, Homes, and Roadside Restaurants of Thailand (2013)