Difficulty: 3 / 5
Fish sauce, tamarind and lime juice can vary in flavour when trying to achieve the Thai balance of salty, sweet, sour - ensure to taste your pad thai sauce to ensure you are happy with it, adjusting as needed. Salt levels can vary from brand to brand greatly or the tartness of your limes.
Step 1 - Soak pad thai noodles in lukewarm water to soften enough before stir frying - about 10 minutes should give you a pliable noodle that doesn’t snap when bent nor is too soggy.
Stir together tamarind, water, fish sauce, palm sugar and balsamic and set aside.
Step 2 - Preheat wok over high heat with olive oil. Once oil shimmers, add ½ of the peanuts, frying in the oil to toast for 2 minutes, then remove from the wok. Add in shallots, garlic and cubed tofu and fry until beginning to brown. Your noodles should be ready to be used by this point - pliable but if not, more water can be added to the pot to soften noodles where needed.
Step 3 - Drain noodles and add to the wok, tossing quickly to prevent sticking. Add in Arbol pepper and sauce mixture and toss to coat. Push noodle mixture up the side of the wok an dpour in beaten eggs into the middle, stirring until almost cooked, but still a bit soft. Slide noodles back into the middle and toss egg throughout to finish cooking. Check if noodles are cooked enough - add in 2 tbsp of water and continue toss if noodles are still firm. Add in prawns and white pepper - toss through to coat and cook.
Step 4 - Once noodles and prawns are ready to serve, add in bean sprouts and green onions, tossing in evenly. Serve pad thai hot, with an extra sprinkling of peanuts on top and lime wedges.