Phad Thai, also known as Pad Thai or Phat Thai, is a nationally acclaimed dish that has become synonymous with Thai cuisine worldwide. The origins of Phad Thai can be traced back to the 1930s during the reign of Plaek Phibunsongkhram, who was the Prime Minister of Thailand at the time. As part of a nation-building and economic reform initiative, he aimed to promote Thai nationalism and encourage rice production. Phad Thai was created as a culinary symbol of Thai identity, combining traditional ingredients with Chinese stir-fry techniques that were popular among Thai-Chinese immigrants.
The dish quickly gained popularity and became a staple in Thai street food culture, as it was easy to prepare, affordable, and showcased the harmonious blend of flavors that Thai cuisine is renowned for – sweet, sour, salty, and spicy. The main components of Phad Thai include rice noodles, protein (such as chicken, shrimp, or tofu), tamarind sauce, fish sauce, palm sugar, and various local vegetables and herbs. The dish is typically garnished with lime, peanuts, and cilantro, and can be customized to suit individual tastes.
Phad Thai’s cultural impact transcends its status as a national dish. Over time, it has become an ambassador for Thai cuisine, introducing people from around the world to the vibrant flavors and rich culinary traditions of Thailand. Today, Phad Thai can be found in Thai restaurants across the globe, and its continued popularity reflects the enduring appeal and adaptability of this beloved dish.
Experience the true taste of Thailand with this delicious and easy-to-follow recipe for Phad Thai Gai. This famous dish features stir-fried rice noodles cooked with chicken, tamarind sauce, and fresh local ingredients, making it a perfect blend of flavors that you can enjoy at home. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, this recipe will transport you straight to the vibrant streets of Thailand with every bite.
- 200g flat rice noodles
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
- 200g boneless, skinless chicken breast, thinly sliced
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup bean sprouts
- 2 green onions, chopped into 1-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup chopped unsalted roasted peanuts
- 1 lime, cut into wedges
- Fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)
For the sauce:
- 3 tbsp tamarind paste
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp palm sugar (or brown sugar)
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1/2 tsp chili powder (adjust according to your desired spice level)
- Prepare the noodles: In a large bowl, soak the rice noodles in warm water for 20-30 minutes or until soft but not mushy. Drain and set aside.
- Make the sauce: In a small bowl, mix together the tamarind paste, fish sauce, palm sugar, oyster sauce, and chili powder. Stir until the sugar has dissolved and the ingredients are well combined. Set aside.
- Cook the chicken: In a large wok or skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and shallot, and stir-fry until fragrant and golden, about 1 minute. Add the sliced chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through and no longer pink, about 4-5 minutes.
- Add the noodles: Add the prepared rice noodles to the wok, along with the sauce. Toss well to evenly coat the noodles and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the noodles are tender and have absorbed the flavors of the sauce.
- Add the eggs: Push the noodles and chicken to one side of the wok, and pour the beaten eggs onto the other side. Let the eggs sit for a moment to set, then scramble them gently. Once the eggs are cooked, mix them into the noodles and chicken.
- Add the vegetables: Add the bean sprouts and green onions to the wok, and stir-fry for an additional 1-2 minutes, until the vegetables are slightly softened but still crisp.
- Serve: Divide the Phad Thai Gai among the serving plates. Garnish with chopped peanuts, lime wedges, and fresh cilantro, if desired. Enjoy your authentic Thai meal!
Note: Feel free to customize your Phad Thai Gai by adding your favorite vegetables or substituting shrimp or tofu for the chicken. The possibilities are endless!