TAMARIND CASHEW STIR-FRY NOODLES

I know it’s been ages since my last blog post but if have been following my food journey a bit you probably know why. Having UC is really hard at times and it seems to always make it’s way back into my at the worst times. But i guess that’s what I have to deal with and always remember, although it’s tough, very tough, there are people out in this world that have it worse than me.

Alright, so since you all know that I could eat Thai or Vietnamese food almost every day, I’m sharing a very simple yet satisfying dish with you, that I’m sure every one will love in your family as well. My boyfriend looooves Pad Thai, so this is a very similar dish to it. And let me tell you, since Chris is a Pad Thai specialist, he not only approved it but called it as one of the best he’s had so far. Yay to me! What makes this dish different is the use of cashew butter and no egg since it’s vegan. But the best part - and that’s what makes it soooo super delicious – is the use of tamarind paste. This funky looking fruit is used a lot in Middle Eastern and Asian cuisine but rarely know in the West. Having Persian roots, I known tamarind since I was a child. We eat it as it is or mixed with other fruits as fruit leather. Translated the name means „the Indian date“ which comes from the fact that it actually resembles dates and it orginates from India. You can use tamarind in various sauces, spice pastes, chutneys or beverages. One of my favorite uses is for magharitas. Oh yes, you read this right! There is a Mexican restaurant here in Munich that makes the most delicous tamarind margharitas!! Chris and I can’t get enough of them in the summer. So good! Oh and that’s also what gives Pad Thai it’s distinct taste. So if you enjoy that sweet and tart flavor, try using it more often in dips, sauces and maybe even a yummy drink, with or without alcohol. That’s up to you!

Now for the stir-fry noodles, the tangy flavor of the tamarind in combination with the nutty cashew butter is just so good! Some saltiness through the soy or fish sauce and a light sweetness coming from maple syrup make this sauce just perfect. I love to add loads of thai basil and coriander and for a special taste, some tender shiso leaves. A splash of fresh lime juice rounds everything of just right.

Since the recipe is quite easy, let’s get straight to it so we can all enjoy a warm bowl of this super comforting noodle bowl!

 

INGREDIENTS {serve 2}

 

200 gr rice noodles {I used half of a package, soaked, cooked and drained as directed. This may vary depending on the brand, so read the directions before you do anything else}

2 shallots thinly sliced

2-3 cm ginger {peeled and thinly sliced}

2-3 green onions {roughly chopped at an angle}

1 carrot {sliced into ribbons with a veggetable peeler}

2 baby pak choy thinly sliced lengthwise {I actually left the tender leaves on the inside whole}

2 handfuls of bean sprouts

1 handful of each: cilantro & thai basil {roughly ripped by hand}

Shiso leaves {I used green and red} to taste

1-2 handfuls cashews {toasted & chopped}

1-2 tbsp coconut oil

2 tbsp tamarind paste

2 tbsp cashew butter

2-3 tbsp soy sauce {use fish sauce if not vegan}

2 tbsp maple syrup

Juice of 1 lime

Thinly sliced red chili {if tolerated}

 

METHOD

 

1| Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile heat up the coconut oil in a large skillet or wok on medium-high heat and add the shallots, ginger and green onions. Keep stiring so they won’t get dark on you. Add the pak choy and carrots and continue to stir-fry the veggies.

 

2| Once the water is boiling, add some salt to it and add the rice noodles. Stir every once in a while so the noodles don’t stick to each other. Cook as directed on the package. Some noodles require some soaking, so read the description before you start doing anything else. Once the noodles are cooked, drain and wash them with cold water. Set aside to drain well.

 

3| Stir the tamarind, cashew butter, soy or fish sauce and maple syrup together until smooth. Taste and make adjustments if needed.

 

4| Add the noodles and the bean sprouts to the veggies and stir-fry for a minute. Add the tamarind-cashew-soy mixture to the veggie noodles and continue tossing everything until well coated.

 

5|Take the veggie noodles of the heat and add the lime juice, herbs, cashews and chili {if tolerated}. Serve with some more lime slices and herbs on top.

 

I love the combination of flavors here: sweet, tangy, salty, floral, nutty, citrussy.

 

Mmmh enjoy digging in!

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