Stir-Fried Rice Noodle Salad (Pad Thai)

In this popular Thai dish, chewy noodles are paired with crunchy vegetables.

  • Servings: 4

Source: Martha Stewart Living, September 1992


  • 1/2 pound dried flat rice noodles, 1/8 inch thick
  • 1/4 cup light-brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons Asian fish sauce (nam pla)
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste, mixed with 1 tablespoon water, or 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground dried red chiles, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon dried shrimp, minced
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt
  • 1/4 pound string beans, trimmed and thinly sliced lengthwise
  • 1/4 pound sugar-snap peas, cut in half
  • 12 medium shrimp (1/2 pound), peeled and deveined
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts
  • 3 scallions (green parts only), very thinly sliced on the diagonal
  • 1 tablespoon roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped, for garnish
  • 1 lime, quartered lengthwise, for garnish
  • Fresh cilantro sprigs, for garnish


  1. Soak noodles in warm water for 20 minutes, or until softened; drain well. Meanwhile, combine 1/4 cup water, sugar, vinegar, fish sauce, tamarind mixture, and dried chiles in a small saucepan. Simmer, stirring, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add dried shrimp, and set aside.

  2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic, and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Stir in sugar mixture, and reduce heat to lowest possible setting. Bring a medium saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add string beans, and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Add sugar-snap peas, and continue cooking for 30 seconds. Drain, and set aside.

  3. In another large nonstick skillet, cook shrimp over medium-high heat, 3 minutes per side. Meanwhile, add noodles, a quarter of the bean sprouts, and half the scallions to the shallot mixture. Raise heat to high, and boil, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add shrimp, string beans, and sugar-snap peas, and stir for 1 minute more. Turn out noodles onto a platter, sprinkle with peanuts and remaining scallions, and arrange lime quarters, coriander sprigs, and remaining bean sprouts beside them.


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