So for dinner tonight eldest daughter (nicknamed Kiba) helped make her sister’s birthday dinner. I say helped – more accurately – I was the helper! This child is the one we call our “pastafarian” and the one holdout to our gluten free lifestyle – but she’s working on it and getting better. She loves everything Asian, so as Pad Thai noodles are made of rice and gluten free, we use them frequently.
Kiba has become very adept at using spices and seasonings and rarely follows a recipe, so I’ve started snagging her as soon as we finish up so we can get her “recipes” down! As I have been an “at-home” mom for years, and about thirteen of those we got by on one income, we’ve used frozen foods quite a lot – and are usually pretty good at making them feel bright and fresh. (I think I might actually do okay on Guy’s Grocery Games, LOL!) You can use virtually any combination of veggies, though – fresh, frozen or a mix like we did tonight.
Kiba’s Chicken Peanut Pad Thai
1 lb frozen veggies (used broccoli, carrot, cauliflower mix)
5 smallish sweet red peppers cut in rings
Handful of Sugar Snap peas
2 Tablespoons coconut oil
2 Tablespoons coconut aminos
2 Tablespoons lime juice
2-3 large frozen chicken thighs
Saute everything on medium low (except the chicken) until the frozen veggies are hot, but try to not overdo! I put my veggies into a bowl to rest while I use the same skillet for cooking the chicken thighs. To the thighs, add about a cup and a half of water, and put a lid on it. Let it simmer a few minutes on medium heat, and check and turn them over. Once they’re no longer frozen, I then slice them into bite sized chunks. Simmer with a bay leaf or two some ginger, thyme, a little black pepper, and freshly ground mustard seed and salt. Daughter uses a mortar and pestle and actually grinds the salt and mustard seed together – she says that the coarse salt helps keep the mustard seeds from hopping around. After 10 minutes or so, this should be smelling pretty great – add veggies back in and adjust seasonings until they seem right for your palate. Turn heat way down just to keep things warm until your noodles are ready.
While all this is going on, you’ll want to have your water boiling and ready to put in your Pad Thai noodles about the time your veggie mix is done, and you can then work on the sauce to go with the noodles:
Kiba’s Peanut Thai Sauce
1/4 cup chunky peanut butter
2 teaspoons tahini (plus 2 teaspoons of the oil – we keep it in the fridge and it doesn’t mix easily)
1/2 tablespoon coconut aminos (GF soy sauce substitute)
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
Pinch of salt
Generous amount of black pepper
1 teaspoon lemon or lime juice
1.5 tablespoons of boiling water from pasta
Once your noodles are cooked and drained, you can rinse them to cool a bit and then toss with the peanut sauce and top with the veggie mix.