I received an email from another food blogger friend the other day and she asked me if I ever ate junk food. When she first sent the email I thought, “Surely everyone eats junk food from time to time? Traveling? It’s late and your hungry?” Then I thought about John and me and we do eat junk food but not very often. Do you? I’d love to say that junk food never passed my lips but I’m not cute as a liar.
John is guilty of hankering for fish and chips and after his heart attack, he really shouldn’t be eating it. Despite his assertion that it’s got healthy fish in it so that counters the batter and deep frying, I disagree.
What we do eat from time to time is takeaway Chinese. There’s a little shop in Maroochydore called Belly Good that’s quick and reliably good. It’s about 12 minutes from the house but still worth driving over there to pick it up.
We had meetings today and when we got home at 5:15pm from a meeting with our web designer, I didn’t feel like preparing dinner. I wanted to watch the Australian Open and the Asian Cup soccer match so we decided on Chinese takeaway or take out.
We had chicken pad Thai (yes I know that it’s not technically Chinese), combination chow mein, special fried rice and spring rolls. We would have had Chinese tea but I organised the pantry and I couldn’t find where I put it. I remember putting it in a special container. Have you ever parked something you used frequently in a stupid place and then berated yourself because you couldn’t find it? That was me earlier. We had water and the teapot and cups stood idle like little soldiers.
I really like chicken pad Thai and here’s the recipe I use when I make it myself. Homemade is 10 times better than takeaway I think.
- 200g pad thai rice noodles
- 2 small chicken breast fillets, cut into thin strips
- ½ tablespoon sauce & 2 more tablespoons for sauce
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 cloves fresh garlic, finely chopped
- 1 inch piece ginger, finely grated
- 1 long red chilli, sliced
- 1 red capsicum / bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 cups fresh bean sprouts
- 4 spring onions / scallions, sliced thickly on long angle
- ⅓ cup roasted peanuts, chopped
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon hot chilli sauce
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 fresh lime, cut into wedges, to serve
- For the pad Thai sauce, combine ingredients in a bowl, stir to dissolve sugar.
- Soak noodles in a large saucepan of boiling water for 6 minutes or until almost tender. Drain. Refresh under cold water.
- Cut chicken in half horizontally, then into thin strips. Then combine the chicken and soy sauce in a bowl. Set aside.
- Heat a large wok or frying pan over medium-high heat and add the oil and swirl around the pan to coat. Add garlic, ginger, chilli and capsicum, stir-fry 10 seconds.
- Add chicken, stir-fry for 3-4 minutes, or until cooked.
- Push everything to the side and add eggs into center of wok. Stir quickly to just scramble, then mix everything together.
- Add noodles and half the pad Thai sauce. Using two large spoons, lift and turn noodles to stir-fry and combine with other ingredients.
- Add remaining sauce and stir fry until mixture becomes sticky and sauce is absorbed by the noodles.
- Remove from heat and fold through bean sprouts, half the spring onions and half the peanuts.
- Divide among 3 - 4 plates, garnish with remaining spring onion and peanuts and serve with lime wedges on the side.
I didn’t grow up with Asian food in Maine and was only barely introduced when I arrived at university. Okay maybe my mother made something called beef chow mein but honestly, if you saw it you would not recognize it as Asian. How about you?