Kelp noodles are clear, thin noodles made from kelp (a brown seaweed). They are fat-free, gluten-free, and very low in carbohydrates and calories. They also contain a pretty high level of iodine so be sure to enjoy them in moderation. They have a very neutral taste which makes them easy to incorporate into salads or soups, and here, in our updated version of pad thai.
6 ounces kelp noodles, cut in half
1 tablespoon tamarind paste
2 teaspoons fish sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
Juice from 1/2 lime
Splash of water
2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
6 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced ginger
Pinch red pepper flakes, or to taste
2 large eggs, beaten
1 medium carrot, shredded
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup bean sprouts
1/4 cup salted peanuts, roughly chopped, for garnish
Sesame seeds, for garnish
Fresh chopped cilantro, for garnish
1 lime, cut into wedges, for serving
1. Place noodles in a bowl and cover with warm water. Allow to sit for about 10 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, make sauce. In a bowl, whisk together tamarind paste, fish sauce, sugar, lime juice, and water. Taste for flavor and adjust as desired. Set aside.
3. Drain noodles and pat dry.
4. Place a wok (or a large non-stick pan) over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Add 1 tablespoon oil and heat until almost smoking. Add shrimp and cook until almost cooked through, about 2 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes and cook for 15-30 seconds. Transfer to a plate.
5. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan. Add noodles to pan and cook for 30 seconds, tossing as they cook. Add 1/2 of sauce, coating noodles. Push noodles to one side of wok (or pan) and add eggs. Cook for about 30 seconds. Add shrimp mixture back to pan along with carrots, scallion, and bean sprouts. Toss until just warmed through, about 30 seconds. Divide among serving bowls and garnish with peanuts, sesame seeds, and cilantro. Top with remaining sauce and serve with lime wedges.
cook’s note: You can find kelp noodles in some stores, or online at Sea Tangle Noodle Company.
For more great seaweed recipes, check out our new spring issue, ON SALE NOW.
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