Nutrition It’s a double-bill!: Pad Thai and Green Mango Salad

It’s a double-bill!: Pad Thai and Green Mango Salad

Sam chops unidentified green veggies

Today’s post was co-written and co-created by Elbows and Sam, long-time friends and running buddies. Take it away, ladies!

So much yumminess on one plate!
So much yumminess on one plate!

The recipe sounds a bit complicated but it’s really just a series of separate steps, so you’re not trying to do a lot at once (you don’t have to worry about timing much, which I always find to be the tricky part).  Everything gets all heated together at the end so it doesn’t matter if things cool off along the way.

I bought the tamarind paste at an East Indian grocery store.  I’m not sure how accessible it is elsewhere.  Many recipes call for using a sort of block of tamarind that you have boil and such.  I have only tried the jarred kind but it was very simple and I was pleased with how it tasted.  The version of the chili sauce that most people will be familiar with in Canada is the big bottle with the rooster on it.


  • 12 ounces dried flat rice noodles (1/4 inch wide; sometimes called pad Thai or banh pho)

    Sam chops unidentified green veggies
    Sam chops unidentified green veggies
  • 4 tablespoons peanut oil (vegetable or canola oil would work as well)
  • 3 tablespoons tamarind paste (in a jar)
  • 1/2 cup light soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Sriracha (Southeast Asian chile sauce)
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 (14- to 16-ounce) package firm tofu
  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 cups bean sprouts (1/4 pound)
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped peanuts
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 lime, cut into slices
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 18 uncooked shrimp
  • Cooking spray

Marinate shrimp in lime juice and garlic powder.

Combine taramind, soy sauce, brown sugar and Sriracha. Set aside.

Prepare noodles according to package directions, being careful not to overcook.  Rinse and set aside.

Rinse tofu, then cut into 1-inch cubes and pat very dry.

Brown tofu in 1 layer in a non-stick pan, gently turning occasionally, until golden, 5 to 8 minutes (oil or cooking spray can be used but is not necessary).  Remove from pan and set aside.

Spray the pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Add eggs and then cook, stirring gently with a spatula, until cooked through. Break into small chunks with spatula and transfer to a bowl.

Heat 2 tablespoons of peanut oil in the pan. Stir-fry scallions, garlic, and onion until softened, about 1 minute.

Add noodles and stir-fry over medium heat (use 2 spatulas if necessary) 3 minutes. Add the extra oil if required.  Add tofu, bean sprouts, and sauce, turning noodles over to absorb sauce evenly, about 2 minutes.  Add egg and shrimp.  Transfer to a large shallow serving dish or individual plates.

Mr. Elbows, hard at work
Mr. Elbows, hard at work

Sprinkle pad Thai with peanuts, cilantro, lime wedges, and Sriracha.



  • 2 firm unripe mangos, finely sliced or julienned
  • 1 cup of bean sprouts
  • 1 cup finely sliced red pepper
  • 2 green onions, finely sliced
  • handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
  • handful of fresh mint, chopped


  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce (or more soy sauce, for vegetarian option)
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper flakes (adjust amount to taste)

Directions (super easy!)

1. Assemble salad ingredients in large bowl

2. Mix dressing ingredients in small bowl

3. Toss salad with dressing

4. Enjoy!

Bon appetit!
Bon appetit!

The girls didn’t mention what they were drinking in this photo. So I guess this is the part where I throw in my two cents and justify all those wine classes. Gewurtztraminer is the classic recommendation for Thai food. It’s a cool-climate white wine, usually with notes of lychees, passion fruit and roses. Canada does great Gewurtzs and so does Germany and the French region of Alsace. Viognier has a similar flavour profile, if you’re in the mood for something different. 
You could also go with an unoaked Chardonnay, a Riesling or a warm climate Sauvignon Blanc (i.e., one with citrus notes rather than grassy notes). When I was in Prince Edward County two weekends ago, I had some very nice unoaked Chardonnays with lovely tropical notes. And, of course, sparkling wine is the always a good fall-back. It really does go with most foods.


  1. Looks delicious, and can’t wait to try it…

    BUT! You’d better change the title to “Pescetarian Pad Thai” or drop either the shrimp or the “Vegetarian” from the name of the dish.

    A vegetarian doesn’t each shrimp. It will save you a firestorm.

  2. Thanks, Lisa! It was sent to me as a recipe that had the possibility for vegefication but I dropped that paragraph and forgot to change the recipe heading. I whole-heartedly agree with you on the vegetarians not eating shrimp front. I knew a girl who used to call herself a vegetarian but would eat chicken. Used to drive me nuts.

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