Pad Chae: A Leap Day Experiment

Scheduling this food experimentation on this leap day…Happy Leap Day everyone and Happy Birthday to all member of the Honor Society of Leap Year Day Babies.  I took a chance on this recipe…sort of taking a leap of faith…am not sure, I don’t know, if combining pad thai and jap chae would work.   Here’s the recipe first….

Jap Chae yam noodles tossed with pad thai sauce…what a fabulous combination of a stir-fry meal, and  it works!

Pad thai sauce:
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup fish sauce (patis)
3 tablespoons tomato catsup
2 tablespoons tamarind concentrate (available in Asian aisle)
2 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar

8 to 12 oz Korean Dangmyun (sweet potato starch) dried noodles
1 – 2 medium carrots, sliced julienned
2 – 3 cups shredded cabbage
handful of dried shiitake mushrooms (wood ears) or black fungus strips, about 1/4 cup, soaked in boiling water for 10 minutes
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
2 large eggs, beaten
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 lb shrimps, peeled and deveined
1 – 2 cups fresh bean sprouts

Garnish:  fried garlic, sliced spring onions, lime wedges

Combine pad thai sauce ingredients in a small saucepan.  Cook on medium-low heat until well combined and sugar is dissolved.  Taste and feel free to add more Sriracha or vinegar.  Set aside.

Cook Dangmyun noodles in boiling water until transparent, about 10 minutes.  Transfer to colander to drain, then rinse thoroughly under cold water.  Roughly cut with kitchen scissors.  Toss in 2 tablespoons of the pad thai sauce.  Blanch the sliced carrots and shredded cabbage in the boiling water and drain, about 2 to 3 minutes.

In a wok or large skillet,heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and scramble beaten eggs (cut in small pieces with turner).   Remove cooked eggs from wok.  Pour remaining 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and add chopped onion and minced garlic, saute until done.  Add prepared shrimps and cook until shrimps turn orange or pink.    Transfer shrimps to a plate and set aside.  Add bean sprouts and rehydrated mushroom strips and stir fry until heated through, then push to sides.  Pour pad thai sauce in center of wok and let it boil.  Add drained noodles and toss well to coat with sauce .  Mix in scrambled eggs and blanched vegetables and thoroughly combine all ingredients.   Transfer to serving plate and garnish with desired toppings.  And yes, serve hot!

My hubby liked it a lot, I loved it, it was better than eating pad thai noodles that got too soft and mushy (always happens when you make big batch of pad thai).   The taste — oh yum, I skipped on sesame oil flavors (from Jap Chae) and the coarsely chopped peanuts (from Pad Thai), so it would be more of a new dish.  Enjoy!

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