Summer Pad Thai

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Cooking & Recipes

I’m prone to kitchen laziness during summer, especially on those days where it’s blazingly hot outside, the pedestal fan just isn’t cutting the mustard in my heinously non-air conditioned flat, and the very thought of consuming a hot meal makes me break out in yet another layer of sweat.

Sydney has had its fare share of those days lately, so a post-work feed that doesn’t require the stove, oven, or exertion of any kind has been priority numero uno. I’d been itching to deep-dive into some clean eating and wellness blogs (which I usually avoid due to the self-loathing they inevitably cause) and find a good recipe for “Raw Pad Thai”, where the standard rice noodles are swapped for spiralised veggies and doused in a punchy, citrusy, nut-based dressing. No cooking, no carbs, no problem. After a bit of research I picked the ingredients and quantities I enjoyed and churned out this dish for an easy-breezy Tuesday night dinner. And, as I had toasted the nuts and vaguely considering warming everything up in a hot pan first (which I tried with the leftovers the next day and it was excellent), I decided not to call it a Raw Pad Thai, but rather name it after the season that inspired it. This amount feeds two hungry humans.

To make the dressing, blend together a clove of garlic, 1/4 cup of peanut or cashew butter, the zest and juice of a lime, 3 chopped kaffir lime leaves, a small red chilli, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of water, a teaspoon of your sweetener of choice, a tablespoon of sesame oil, and a tablespoon of grated ginger. Add some more water if it’s too thick.

Spiralise or julienne peel a zucchini, a carrot, and a cucumber into a large bowl. Add a dealer’s choice combination of thinly slice some veggies: red red cabbage, spring onions, radishes, capsicum, asparagus, red onion, and broccoli all go well. If you’re feeling protein-deprived, you can always add some grilled chicken, prawns, or tofu. Pour over the sauce and toss everything together until well combined, then transfer to serving bowls and top with chopped Thai basil, coriander, and a sprinkling of peanuts or cashews. Easy done!

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