Tag Archives: Thai

Primal Pad Thai

Standard

It’s so nice to share a Primal meal with people you love! My brother turned me over to the Primal side last summer and I loved it so much I’ve never looked back. Around that time, I met a woman in her young twenties that was battling uterine cancer and she had started a Paleo lifestyle and quit taking her prescription drugs. Each time she returned for blood work, her levels were better and better. She was healing herself purely through diet.

At the same time, my dear cousin, Joanna, in Boston was fighting breast cancer and I immediately called her to tell her this inspirational story and how great I had been feeling on the Primal diet. After getting her diagnosis, Joanna and her husband John immediately started reevaluating their eating habits, even though they have always lived a healthy lifestyle. They bought a vitamix and started focusing on eating more raw fruits and vegetables. Most people I told about my new Primal lifestyle thought I was nuts, but John and Joanna were of course receptive to it because they had just been handed a new perspective on life. As much as the last year has been full of struggle for them, sometimes the best thing life can throw at us is a new perspective, and a chance to inspire others, which is exactly what Joanna has done. I am thrilled to report that she is cancer free and I just spent Memorial Day with them and their beautiful daughter, making fresh juices and a delicious primal meal.

And apparently my Thai kick is still going strong. I had been hearing about kelp noodles from a local raw vegan chef in LA and I was eager to try them. I was flipping through one of my cousins’ new cookbooks, Thrive foods, a collection of plant-based recipes, when I found a recipe for kelp noodles with an almond butter based sauce (essentially a new and improved pad thai–this sauce is killer!). unfortunately, our visit to the Asian market was not fruitful for kelp noodles, so we decided to try the sweet potato noodles that we stumbled upon. These noodles are obviously still full of starch so not an everyday option, but if you really are craving noodles, you can feel much better about their nutrient-rich source.  Being so used to our Primal lifestyle, we felt we needed to add some protein to this plant-based meal, so of course we threw in some chicken, and naturally swapped the high glycemic carrots fo greens. I also made a version of my Primal Chocolate Cupcakes for dessert–recipe coming soon.

My favorite part is the gorgeous garden in my cousins backyard, which we picked our broccoli directly from. And best of all, we used the entire plant, stalks and all, in this delicious stirfry!

IMG_20130527_190718 IMAG0472

Primal Pad Thai (Adapted from Thrive Foods Cookbook) (Difficulty-Intermediate; Serves 4)

  • 1 package sweet potato noodles (found in Asian markets)’
  • 1/2 c. creamy almond butter
  • 2-3 Tbsp. organic honey
  • 2 Tbsp. organic brown rice miso
  • 2 tsp. wasabi powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 tsp. ginger powder
  • 1/2 c. water, or more as needed
  • 1 1/2 lbs. organic chicken breast, diced into bite sized-pieces
  • 1 bunch organic kale, chopped
  • 1 head organic broccoli, chopped
  • 1/2 c. organic cilantro, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp. toasted almonds, finely chopped
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 4 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
  • sesame oil
  • salt and pepper
  • sriracha

Prepare the Sauce and Noodles: Whisk the almond butter, honey, miso, wasabi, garlic, ginger and water in a medium bowl until smooth. Add extra water to thin the sauce as necessary. If you like your food spicy, you can add some sriracha or red chili flakes to the sauce, or also to the completed dish just before serving.

IMAG0476 IMAG0477

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the sweet potato noodles, and cook for about 6 minutes, or until al dente. Transfer noodles to a strainer and coat with a teaspoon or two of sesame oil to prevent them from sticking together. The noodles will be very sticky! When you add them to the stir fry, the sesame oil and sauce should help to separate them.

Make the stir fry: Heat 2 tsp. of sesame oil in a large skillet or wok on medium-high. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and a little Hungarian paprika for color. Add the chicken to the hot oil and cook until slightly browned on the outside, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside. The chicken will finish cooking when you add it back to the pan with the veggies.

With the skillet still hot, add another teaspoon of sesame oil if necessary, and cook the kale and broccoli until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add the sweet potato noodles and chicken to the skillet and pour the sauce over. Stir to evenly distribute the sauce, adding any water as necessary to thin the sauce out. Serve with fresh cilantro, scallions, toasted sesame seeds, chopped almonds, and sriracha (if desired).

IMAG0480

Advertisements

Cucumber and Cabbage Salad

Standard

I really have a thing for Asian salads–cucumber salad, the salad typical of Japanese cuisine with the delicious carrot ginger dressing, seaweed salad– I could go.  So when I saw this recipe I just had to make it. It was a perfect accoutrement to my Shrimp Green Curry. It’s like if cole slaw and cucumber salad had a baby. Crisp, refreshing, and tasty! A warm weather must.

IMAG0330

Cucumber and Cabbage Salad (Adapted from Healthy Seasonal Recipes) (Difficulty-Easy; Serves 4-6)

  • 1 head organic Napa Cabbage, finely sliced
  • 6 seedless Persian cucumbers, julienne cut (4 cups)
  • ½ c. chopped roasted, salted peanuts (or blanched almonds to stay completely primal)
  • ¼ c. chopped fresh organic cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 c. extra virgin organic coconut oil
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • ¼ c. freshly squeezed organic lime juice
  • 2 tsp. raw honey
  • 2 tsp. coarse sea salt, or more to taste
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • Red chili flake to taste, optional

Combine cabbage, cucumbers, peanuts and cilantro in a large bowl. Whisk oil, lime juice, honey, salt, garlic and onion powder and red chili flake if using in a small bowl. Pour over the vegetable mixture and toss to coat. Chill at least 20 minutes before serving.

IMAG0313 IMAG0314 IMAG0316 IMAG0317

Shrimp and Veggie Green Curry

Standard

Continuing on with my Thai kick, I made this deliciously simple shrimp and veggie curry. It is amazing how easy it is to make Thai food at home, and not just any Thai food, but food that tastes better than your favorite take out spot and is healthier!! I served this over my infamous Cauliflower Rice, and started with a refreshing Cucumber Cabbage Salad.

IMAG0333

Shrimp and Veggie Green Curry (Difficulty-Easy; Serves 4)

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 4 oz. green curry paste
  • 1 c. organic low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 organic red bell pepper, sliced into strips
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 4 oz. organic snap peas
  • 8 oz. organic bok choy, quartered lengthwise
  • 3-4 sprigs organic Thai basil, with stems (or regular basil)
  • 1 serrano chile
  • zest of 1 organic lime
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup lightly salted peanuts, chopped

In a large wok or saucepan, bring the coconut milk and curry paste to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking constantly until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth, bell pepper, onion, basil, chile, lime zest, and sesame oil. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-low heat. Cover the pan and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes.

IMAG0328 IMAG0329

Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Remove the lid from the curry and add the shrimp, snap peas and the bok choy. Simmer, uncovered, until the shrimp is cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the basil sprigs and discard.

IMAG0332

Ladle the curry into bowls. Garnish with the cilantro and peanuts.

Thai Turkey Lettuce Wraps

Standard

Why spend money on take out when you can make amazingly simple and healthy Thai food right in your own kitchen?! This dish literally took me 15 minutes to throw together and is a vibrantly flavored Primal meal. I like my Thai food extra spicy so the blend of chiles and citrus really make this dish for me. If you are sensitive to spice, definitely tone down the chile and sriracha in this recipe. I particularly love Thai and other Asian foods in the warmer weather months because the flavors are so fresh and bright so you can expect a few more “take-out” recipes to pop up soon.

IMAG0294

Thai Turkey Lettuce Wraps (highly adapted from Food Network Magazine) (Difficulty-Easy; Serves 3-4)

For the sauce:

  • 1/3 c. fresh lime juice (from about 2-3 organic limes)
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce, or Bragg’s liquid aminos
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. sherry vinegar
  • 1 tsp. sriracha
  • 1 Tbsp. raw honey

For the turkey filling:

  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin coconut oil
  • medium onion, diced
  • 3 organic scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp. zest from an organic lemon
  • 2 serrano chiles, stemmed and thinly sliced
  • coarse sea salt
  • 1 lb. organic free range ground turkey (preferably dark meat)
  • 1/2 c. chopped organic cilantro
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 head butter or romaine lettuce, leaves separated

Make the sauce: In a small bowl, whisk the lime juice, lemon juice, soy sauce, sesame oil, sriracha, vinegar and honey. Set aside.

IMAG0288

Make the turkey: In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, scallions, lemon zest, chiles, and salt to taste. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the turkey and season with salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the meat and vegetables are cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add the dressing to the pan and cook 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cilantro. Season with salt and pepper.

IMAG0289 IMAG0290 IMAG0291

Spoon the turkey mixture onto the lettuce leaves and arrange on a serving platter.

 IMAG0293