Peanut oil (for frying tofu)
Veggies (peppers, onions, mushrooms)--optional
Sambal Oelekecs chili paste
There are many recipes available for Pad Thai, but haven't yet found one that is perfect. Through a bit of trial and error my husband has developed the perfect recipe:
First, put the noddles in hot (not boiling) water and let them soak
Second, cut tofu into squares and fry it in peanut oil (any oil is okay, provided it can handle higher temperatures). Patience is the key to crispy delicious tofu. Alternatively, you can bake tofu. Cover it in soy sauce, ginger, any other spices you like and then put it in the oven at 350, flipping regularly.
Next, saute any other veggies (peppers, onions, mushroom). Scramble an egg.
For the sauce, mix 3 T. taminind paste (store bought or homemade from tamarind pods), 3 T brown sugar, Sambal Oelekecs chili paste (vary depending on how hot you like it), 3 T fish sauce (quality matters!), 2 T rice vinegar. Stir and taste. Feel free to adjust until it is that perfect combination of sweet, salty, and sour.
Pull the noodles out of the water (they don't need to be drained, some water helps the sauce), put them into the pan (with the veggies, egg and tofu). Pour the sauce on top, and saute until the noodles are al dente.
Garnish as desired, traditionally with peanuts,bean sprouts, lime wedge, cilantro, extra chili powder,shredded carrots, green onions and anything else that sounds good. The garnishes are really what make this dish, so be generous!