My first experience cooking a Thai dish was a complete and raving success. This meal was so delicious, I am sacrificing a much, MUCH, needed nap to post this dish (my 6-month old baby has not slept a wink, no not one, the last two nights due to a ferocious cold). All three of my boys are napping right now and I am taking one for the team in order to get this recipe up and running. The flavors of this dish are intense yet blend so well together you can’t taste one single overpowering flavor. Don’t be put off by some of the ingredients (and the bad picture – it looks a hundred times better in the book!) – I found all but the fish sauce in my everday grocery store. Plus, it was well worth buying the unique ingredients because I will definitely be making this again soon! Another perk is this meal comes together FAST and that is a huge plus in my book. My husband ate later than the rest of us due to a basketball game he was playing in. Usually after a game, I am bombarded by highlights and super human tricks that were exhibited on the court by all the 30 or 40-something men trying to relive the glory days. However, last night, all I heard for the rest of the evening was how delicious dinner was. Looks like this will definitely be our “game night” meal!
By the way, I owe thanks to my friend, Nicole, for lending me The Complete Cookbook she received as a wedding present several years ago. It is the biggest cookbook I have ever held in my hands (over 600 pages) and I can’t wait to try more recipes now that this was such a hit!
Trade Secrets: Because my two young boys were eating this, I scaled down the amount of red chili and shallots. The original recipe calls for 1 red chili, finely chopped, but I only used half. If you want more kick, finely chop the whole pepper (heavens, try two peppers) and throw it in. I had never bought fresh egg noodles – if you haven’t either, I found mine right next to the wonton wrappers in the cool section of the produce department. I also found the red curry paste in my everday grocery store in the Asian foods section. The only ingredient you may struggle finding in the grocery store is fish sauce. I have a big bottle on hand for a to-die for egg roll recipe I make so I didn’t have to buy it for this recipe. But when I do buy it, I usually head straight for the Oriental market.
1 pound fresh egg noodles
1 tablespoon oil
2 shallots, finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon finely chopped red chili
1 1/2 tablespoons red curry paste
12 ounces lean pork, finely sliced (I used 1/2 of a pork roast I had in my freezer and it worked great)
1 carrot, cut into thin strips (I used 6 baby carrots…yes, cutting them into thin strips was a beast)
2 tablespoons fish sauce**
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 green onions, finely sliced
Cook the egg noodles in boiling water for 2 minutes or until tender. Drain and keep warm. Heat the oil in a wok until it is very hot. Add the shallots, garlic, chili and curry paste and stir-fry for 2 minutes or until fragrant. Add the sliced pork and cook for 3 minutes or until the meat changes color.
Add the carrot, fish sauce and brown sugar and bring to a boil. Add the noodles and green onion and toss well. Serve immediately (obviously it was fine warmed up later for my husband).
**If you have never used fish sauce, beware. It is perhaps the stinkiest ingredient I have EVER used. But get past it. Clip your nose shut with a clothespin. Burn 72 candles while cooking. Make your husband or child add the offensive liquid. Do something, but don’t be swayed from using it. The odor does not carry through to the dish and you can’t get the unique flavor from anything else. Now if you are pregnant and have an aversion to weird smells, then don’t even think about it. Save this recipe for later.
Recipe Source: adapted from The Complete Cookbook