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Noodles With Crunch

May 14, 1997|DONNA DEANE | Deane is director of the Times Test Kitchen

This low-fat version of pad Thai noodles, a favorite stir-fry dish of mine, just happens to be vegetarian as well. High-protein tofu and fresh vegetables are added to rice noodles to make the dish healthful and nutritious.

Use firm, low-fat tofu, which can be found packaged in small boxes in the dairy or produce sections of markets. Thai rice noodles, about the width of linguine, should be cooked about 1 minute, until they are limp but will hold up in the stir-fry without falling apart. Letting them rest in a bowl of cold water after cooking prevents them from sticking together until it's time to add them to the stir-fry.

You want the bean sprouts to retain their crunch, so cook them briefly just until warm. A sprinkle of chopped peanuts, a few bean sprouts and shredded carrots finish the dish. Serve with lime wedges.


2 (10 1/2-ounce) packages firm, low-fat tofu

Nonstick cooking spray


1/3 cup fish sauce

1/3 cup sugar

2 teaspoons rice vinegar

Los Angeles Times Wednesday May 21, 1997 Home Edition Food Part H Page 2 Food Desk 1 inches; 27 words Type of Material: Correction
The Low-Fat Cooking recipe for Pad Thai Noodles (May 14) contained fish sauce and was mislabeled as a vegetarian dish. To make it truly vegetarian, substitute tamari sauce for the fish sauce.

2 teaspoons lime juice

1 tablespoon paprika

Red pepper flakes

5 ounces Thai rice noodles

1/2 onion, cut into strips

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup shredded red cabbage

1 cup shredded nappa cabbage

3/4 cup shredded carrot

1/2 cup nonfat egg substitute

2 1/2 cups bean sprouts

2 tablespoons chopped peanuts

Lime wedges

Drain tofu well, pat dry with paper towels and cut into 1-inch cubes.

Spray wok or heavy skillet with nonstick cooking spray and heat until hot. Add tofu cubes and fry, turning until browned on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Sprinkle lightly with salt to taste and remove from wok.

Combine fish sauce, sugar, vinegar, lime juice, paprika and red pepper flakes to taste in small bowl and set aside.

Add noodles to boiling water in large saucepan and cook 1 minute. Drain and rinse under cold water. Let stand in bowl of cold water until ready to use, then drain again.

Spray wok or heavy skillet with nonstick cooking spray and heat until sizzling hot. Add onion and stir-fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and stir-fry 1 minute more.

Stir in red cabbage, nappa cabbage and 1/2 cup shredded carrots. Stir until vegetables are limp, 1 to 2 minutes. Add fish sauce mixture. Heat and stir until ingredients are mixed. Stir in tofu cubes and heat until hot through, about 1 minute. Stir in drained noodles.

Push ingredients to one side and add egg substitute. Let stand until egg sets, then stir to break up egg and mix into noodle mixture. Stir in 2 cups bean sprouts and heat until hot through, 1 to 2 minutes.

Spoon onto serving platter and sprinkle with chopped peanuts. Top with remaining 1/2 cup bean sprouts and 1/4 cup carrots. Serve with lime wedges.

3 servings. Each serving:

485 calories; 1,654 mg sodium; 0 cholesterol; 6 grams fat; 86 grams carbohydrates; 24 grams protein; 2.30 grams fiber.

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