Thursday, March 14, 2013

Pad Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps / Vegetarian Lettuce Wraps

Being an Indian, I love the other Asian cuisines very much since the complexity and levels of flavours are so similar in all of them. Grazing through my menu one could see that I love Thai food and tried quite a number of varieties. One of my favorite go-to dish in thai restaurants is Pad Thai (meaning "Fried, thai style"). While the authenticity of the origin of the dish is still in question, I do not mind where it originated given it being tasty. Another cuisine I love is the Chinese and the PF Chang's Tofu lettuce wraps is an inspiration for making this dish. This recipe is vegetarian and Vegan too.
Ingredients:
Serves - 2 as a meal; 4 as an appetizer
Firm Tofu - 1/2 block
Lettuce wraps - as needed (I used iceberg lettuce)
Peanuts - 3 tbsp
Scallions / Spring onion - cut on a bias - for garnish
Lemon juice - for garnish
Oil - 2 tbsp
For Tofu Marinade:
Low sodium Soy sauce - 3 tbsp
Agave syrup - 2 tbsp (see notes below)
Red pepper flakes - 1 tbsp
Grated ginger - 1 tbsp
Salt - to taste
For Sauce:
Tamarind extract -  3 tbsp (see notes below)
Agave syrup - 1 tbsp (see notes below)
Low Sodium Soy sauce - 2 tbsp
Red pepper flakes - 1 tbsp
Salt - as needed
Method:
Press the tofu and remove excess water. Cut into tiny pieces or into desired size. Mix the ingredients for marinade in a ziploc bag and put the cut tofu in the bag. Close the bag and mix well for the marinade to coat the tofu pieces. Store in the fridge until ready to use. Anywhere from 4 to 24 hours is good. 
Dry roast the peanuts until toasted. When done, allow to cool, remove skin and crush into little pieces. Mix the ingredients for sauce and do a taste check. Balance out the flavours according to your palate.
When ready, heat oil in a wide pan and add the marinated tofu. Let it sear for a couple of minutes in med-high heat and then toss. Allow it to sear for couple more minutes and then transfer to a plate. Add the sauce to the same pan and allow it to boil. Reduce the heat and add the tofu and mix. Remove from heat after about 3-5 minutes and garnish with crushed peanuts, lemon juice and spring onions. Serve over lettuce cups.
Notes:
1. I used big gooseberry sized tamarind to make the extract. If using ready to use tamarind paste, mix about 1 tsp of the extract with water to make 3 tbsp.
2. I have used salt very sparingly since the soy sauce already has salt.
3. I used agave nectar for a mellow sweetness. Feel free to substitute with brown sugar or honey. Increase the amount though, since agave is sweeter than sugar or honey.
Sending these beauties to PJ's Celebrate Women's day; Susan's MLLA#57; Taste of the Tropics - Ginger; Flavours of Cuisines - Chinese;

14 comments:

  1. WOW....looks very tempting...yum yum!!!

    http://vegetarianmedley.blogspot.com/

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  2. This filling is a good idea. I love the fusion of this kinda Pad Thai (even though it is without its mandatory noodles) + the PF Chang's famous wraps.

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  3. have never made this at home... looks sooo much like the restaurant ones... thanks for sharing this yummy recipe
    Sowmya
    Ongoing Event - HITS - Diabetic Friendly
    Ongoing Event + Giveaway - Italian Dishes

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  4. who can resist this.. Love it.. I do it very often too

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  5. Interesting and yummy .

    Ongoing event:
    Celebrate - Easter
    in my blog

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  6. wow...so very mouthwatering!!! Makes for a very healthy & yummy recipe!!!
    Prathima Rao
    Prats Corner

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  7. Very inviting n mouth watering love to have some now

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  8. Wraps look very healthy & yumm :)
    Thanx a lot Krithi for linking this beautiful entry!!

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  9. Looks very tempting. Thanks for sending it to the events :)

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  10. This looks delicious and I love that you use tamarind for your pad thai.... and the lettuce wraps.. ok, I basically love everything about this recipe. :)

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