PAD THAI STYLE RICE SALAD (serves 8 as a side dish, 4 as a main course)
1-1/2 to 2 cups cooked long grain white rice, preferably jasmine, cooled
5 tablespoons peanut oil
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
4 cloves garlic, minced
¼ pound large shrimp (about 5), peeled and chopped
¼ pound chicken meat (about 1 small, boneless, skinless thigh), chopped
4 scallions, cut into 1 inch lengths
1 cup bean sprouts, rinsed and trimmed (optional)
2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce, more to taste
2 chiles, preferably Thai, seeded and sliced (optional)
1 tablespoons or 1-1/2 teaspoons tamarind paste or ketchup
2 teaspoons sugar (if you use tamarind)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
¼ cup chopped peanuts
¼ cup chopped cilantro
1 lime, cut into wedges
1.Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a wok or a large skillet, preferably nonstick, over medium heat. Add the eggs and scramble quickly for the first minute or so with a fork almost flat against the bottom of the pan; you’re aiming for a thin egg crepe of sorts, one with the smallest curd you can achieve. Cook just until set, and remove the crepe to a cutting board. Place the rice in a large bowl and add the egg to the bowl.
2. Raise the heat to high and add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil. When the oil is hot, add the garlic and shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp lose their raw, grey color; transfer to the bowl with a slotted spoon. Add the chicken to the wok and saute until just done. Transfer with the slotted spoon. Add the scallions and half of the bean sprouts to the wok and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Transfer with the slotted spoon.
3. Add the fish sauce, chiles, tamarind and sugar (or ketchup), lime juice and a little water (start with ¼ cup) to the wok. Stir just to combine and deglaze the pan (add a little more water if necessary), them drizzle the warm dressing over the salad. Toss, taste and adjust the seasoning, then top with the peanuts, cilantro and remaining bean sprouts. Serve with lime wedges on the side.
from Amanda Hesser, The Essential New York Times Cookbook