Sunday, December 22, 2013

Paleo Chicken Pad Thai from the Paleo Mom

While looking for recipes that fit within my N=1 Autoimmune Paleo experiment, I came across The Paleo Mom's recipe for Chicken Pad Thai.  I've only made one other paleo Pad Thai recipe and it is a labor of love to make time-wise.  Worth it, but not a weeknight dish for me.  Could Paleo Mom's recipe give me the pad thai flavors I love, but in a weeknight dinner timeframe?  I gathered my ingredients and got to work.

As it appeared that this dish would cook really quickly, I decided to chop and measure out all of my ingredients before I started to cook.  I'm glad I did and I recommend you do the same.

I peeled and julienned some carrots.  

I squeezed some fresh lime juice and measured out some fish sauce.  I reader kindly pointed out to me that I've been putting the limes in backwards in my juicer.  I've now tried it both ways and I really cant tell a different in juice output.

I chopped some green onions and cilantro.  

And finally, I cut up the chicken.  

To save some time, I minced the required garlic directly into my heated fat filled saute pan.  My 12 inch saute pan was just large enough for this dish.  

Next, I added the chicken and let it brown before adding the liquid ingredients.

The liquids will boil off while the chicken finishes cooking and it will take on a nice browned appearance.  

Last but not least, I added the carrots and broccoli slaw and mixed everything together.  

Here is my plate garnished with the onions and cilantro.  

Accessibility & Cost of Ingredients:  You should be able to find everything you need for this recipe at your big box grocery store except for the coconut aminos and quality gluten free fish sauce.  You can find the coconut aminos at a more health minded grocery store.  I like using Red Boat Fish sauce.  You can buy directly from them or you may want to check Whole Foods and/or your local Asian market for it.  

This recipe also calls for Coconut Vinegar.  I just happened to have a bottle on hand that I'd bought for a different recipe that I guess was never made.  She lists apple cider vinegar as an alternate ingredient and I think that would work just fine.  

Preparation & Cooking Time:  I forgot to check my timer when I finished chopping/measuring and started cooking.  Drat.  My total preparation and cooking time was 35 minutes.  

Clean Up:  I but everything except for my saute pan into the dishwasher.  I had a few more bowls since I decided to fully measure/chop all of my ingredients before cooking, but it was worth doing.

The Paleo Review:  Thumbs Up! The chicken has a lovely caramelized savory umami flavor that only fish sauce can give you.  Make sure you have some chicken in each bite as the vegetables don't have much of their own flavor.  After a night in the refrigerator, the vegetables pick up more of the seasonings of the dish.  Don't skip the green onions or cilantro as they really round out the thai flavor of the dish.

With that said, this dish doesn't have the flavor of a traditional pad thai, but it certainly has a thai influenced flavor.  The quick preparation and cooking time makes this a great weeknight dinner option and its AIP compliant to boot.  AIP or not, if you're craving Asian food, give this dish a try.