Even if you’ve never tried a recipe box, I’m sure you’ve heard of them. Boxes of ingredients delivered to your door containing everything you need for two or more dishes, along with step-by-step instructions simple enough for even the most novice cook to follow. On the face of it, these boxes can seem like an extravagance or an unnecessary luxury but, when you think about it, if you had to buy all the ingredients you needed for a meal, you wouldn’t use in that one dish everything you bought – one tsp of a spice out of a whole jar/a handful of spinach out of a whole bag, for example – and, as everything’s pre-weighed for you (if a dish needs one tsp of a spice, one tsp of spice will be in the box) as well as there being no waste, there’s also no messing about with scales and measuring spoons or cups. I’ve tried a few recipe boxes in the past and have been impressed each time (especially as the portion sizes have been generous and usually stretched to double the quantities they say they serve).
This was probably nothing like an authentic Pad Thai. In fact, I know it wasn’t, because I’ve eaten Pad Thai dozens of times in Thai restaurants. But it had eggs and peanut and noodles in it, so as far as I’m concerned it was a Pad Thai. Feel free to let me know what puts the ‘Pad’ into a Pad Thai.
I thought it was going to be a disaster as it ended up looking more like a creamy broccoli sauce for pasta – despite it not actually containing any broccoli – than an eggy thing for noodles, but it was a success. And, as The Meat Eater said, it had a base of mushrooms and kale, so there wasn’t much to go wrong really.
Vegetarian Pad Thai (serves 2)
1tbsp vegetable oil
50g kale, chopped
2 large mushrooms, chopped
Large handful of beansprouts
2 eggs, beaten
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
1 tbsp lime juice
50g dry roasted peanuts, chopped
2 spring onions, chopped
- Heat the oil in a frying pan or wok.
- Add the mushrooms and fry until almost cooked.
- Add the kale and fry for a couple of minutes.
- Add the beansprouts.
- Add the soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce and lime juice.
- Add the eggs and stir everything until the eggs are cooked.
- Serve on top of egg noodles (or those other noodles that usually go with Pad Thai) and garnish with the dry roasted peanuts and spring onions.
Healthy meal no. 2 wasn’t so healthy as it contained Quorn, a packet stir-fry sauce and spring rolls. Still, it wasn’t chocolate, cheese, crisps or chips, so it was a lot more healthy than a lot of my meals recently.
My stir-fry was made with leeks and mushrooms from the farm shop, a yellow pepper that’d been sitting in the fridge for a while (not sure how it hadn’t gone off in all that time – this is why I buy my veg from the farm shop, I don’t like freaky vegetables that stay fresh for ever), Quorn Lamb Strips, a tin of beansprouts, egg noodles and served with mini spring rolls.