• erin

    Dumplings with my family
    A recent graduate of The Culinary Institute of America, I found myself with no money, no kitchen equipment, and an exceptionally huge appetite. Ideas, improvisations, and yummy meal solutions were discovered in the kitchen of my very first apartment.
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Pad See Ew, or Dinner and Wine for Under $10

I generally spend Mondays alone. After what seems like an incredibly long day and a seemingly short weekend all I want is to make something quick and easy. This week, I came up with a new idea.

The challenge: dinner for one with no leftovers and wine for under $10. The choice: a Thai-inspired dish that is healthy, fast to prepare, and incredibly satisfying. Take a bite: there’s nothing bargain about it. This is how the results broke down.  I didn’t include standard pantry items that I already had on hand.
1/4 package of tofu:  $0.75
1 head of broccoli crowns: $0.87
1/4 package rice noodles: $1.00
1 portobello mushroom cap: $0.99
1 bunch scallions: $0.69
1 bunch cilantro: $1.14
1 bottle Argentinian Torrontes: $3.99   

Total: $9.43





Pad See Ew

Served 1.
Leftover Potential: This dish made just enough for one person, but multiply it by as much as you want and it will keep well.

1 Tbsp oil
2 tsp chili oil***
1/2 cup firm tofu, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
3/4 cup broccoli florets
2 cloves garlic
1 portobello mushroom cap, cleaned, cut into strips
3/4 bunch scallions, cut on the bias
2 tsp ginger, finely minced

1/4 package rice noodles (about a handful)
2 cups water

1/2 cup soy sauce
1 Tbsp fish sauce
2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
3 Tbsp warm water
1/4 bunch scallions, finely sliced, for garnish
1/8 cup scallions, roughly chopped, for garnish

1. In a wok or a large saute pan, heat the oil(s) over medium high heat. Add the cubed tofu and cook until lightly browned.
2. Add the broccoli, and cook until softened slightly. Add the garlic, mushrooms, and scallions, and cook until nearly softened. The broccoli will should also be nearly softened. Add the ginger, and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to low.
3. In a small pot, bring the water to a boil. Place the rice noodles in a medium heat safe bowl. Pour the boiling water over the rice noodles, and let set until the noodles are softened. It won’t take long – about 3-4 minutes.
4. Season the tofu/vegetable mixture with the soy sauce, fish sauce, and rice wine vinegar.
5. Make a slurry with the cornstarch and the warm water. Add it to the tofu/vegetable mixture and bring to a boil, and allow to boil until the sauce thickens, about 45 seconds.
6. Add the softened noodles to the wok and toss to combine.
7. Serve in warm bowls and garnish with scallions and cilantro.

***If you don’t have chili oil, you can add spice as desired in a number of other ways: red pepper flakes, sriracha, chili paste, etc.


One Response

  1. Delicious! Hey, are you looking for a challenge? I would like a meal that I could completely transform the leftovers into something else – I hate eating the same thing every day for a week, and would LOVE to create something that could easily change into something else – does that sound like a big challenge or what? 🙂

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