Hi...I'm Renee!

I'm a busy mom who uses mindless-creativity to easily calm my mind, ignite my joy + savor life. Learn more here.

{Mama Eats} Pad Thai

{Mama Eats} Pad Thai

Last night, I made my family Pork Pad Thai.

It's been a LONG time since I've cooked a big meal like this from scratch in the middle of the week since I've had Luca.

It's actually not that hard to make and it doesn't take up too much time.

As you can see, it calls for very minimal ingredients; rice noodles, red pepper, garlic, scallions, cilantro, nuts, scrambled eggs, pork, white vinegar, ketchup, tamari, brown sugar, lime.  (not every ingredient is pictured here)

As I started preparing the ingredients, I was thrilled that my kiddos were playing contently together.

And when I say playing contently together, I mean, C had pushed Luca, whom was in his walker, into her room and closed the door, for like 30 minutes.

Of course, I was constantly opening the door to check on them.  But, for the most part, they were both happy in there.  Thank goodness!

I did find myself racing around trying to get it cooked as fast as I could, because you know, when you have a 4 year old and and 11.5 month old, you never know when they're gonna NEED you.

As you can see from the pics, I was successful with making dinner last night. Woooootothehoooooooo!!!

And, by the way, these pics were taken with my iphone.  When I do this, I'm reminded of how much I miss taking pictures of food.  I'm not really into creating my own recipes from scratch right now.  I'm just REALLY into taking pictures of food.

I love to take pictures of my kids and flowers and life, but also have a special place in my heart for snapping the beauty of the food.  So when I did this last night, my stomach tingled with happy butterflies because I was reminded how much I LOVE doing this and at the same time I was also reminded that being a mama to two, sweet, teeny-tiny kids will calm and I'll be able to get in my kitchen more.

But, for now, I just have to do what I can.  So GRATEFUL for my iphone. :)

So...when I sat down to eat this fabulous meal, I could feel the exhaustion settling in. I told myself, I wasn't quite ready to make meals like this just yet during the week.

It's not that this dish was super intense and time consuming. 

It's just that I was more exhausted from having more dishes to clean up and trying to cook as fast I could while tending to my kiddos.

So yeah, the chicken, salad and mac-n-cheese I've been eating every week, which by the way is the same food I was eating when C was one (pictured below, but without the salad...I haven't even had the time to make rice and sauteed veggies yet...so this is my future once Luca turns one) is just hitting the spot these days.

I've actually been eating pretty much the same meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner these days and honestly, I'm totally OK with it.  (Now, before having C, uh, no way would I have been OK with this, but I've learned that right now, in my busy mama life, I have to do what's best for ME...taking care of me and being less stressed is #1 right now in my life).

So yeah, my time is SO limited right now with have an almost walker in the house, who by the way, is 10x more work because he's a BOY and I feel like I have to watch him a lot more than I did with C because he's so much stronger and all about using his head to bounce of the couch and trying to climb up things. WHOA!!!

Oh, and giving him a bath...holy smokes!! He's ALL.OVER.THE.PLACE!! I don't remember bath time being SO exhausting when C was 11 months old.  LOL!

So, yeah, food that's super quick very little to clean up is way more important than anything else to me these days!!

I'm excited that I did get to photograph this yumminess and I can't wait for my time to open up more so I can snap more of the delicious that tasty food provides.

So, if you're like me and LOVE Thai food and want a quick and easy meal to make during the week, this one is spot on.

But, if you're also like me and are pretty much exhausted after cooking a one pot meal while having two little kids under your feet with no help, then save this one for future reference OR just do what I did and ZIP right though it.  ;)

Because even if you make it fast, it'll still taste good.  And I know this for a fact because the hubs thought it was GREAT when he was eating it once he got home (and, FYI, he didn't eat it fresh from the skillet because he wasn't home from work yet.  He basically ate it 2 hours later).  So yeah, it's GOOD! :)

This current version I made is from one of my Holistic Health Coaching friends.  I got this recipe from her way, way back.

But, this past weekend, while waiting at the hair salon, I was reading through Rachel Ray's Everyday magazine and I came across her version for it.  I'm gonna try hers next and I'll post about it and let you know how it is.  (Seeing her recipe inspired me to make mine this week...gotta love cooking mags!!).

The only difference, really, is the sauce and she used shrimp, which I LOVE to use also.  And, you can add anything to your dish, which is always fun.

Pad Thai

Ingredients

Sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
3 tablespoons, fresh lime
2 to 3 tablespoons, white vinegar (depending on your taste buds)
1 to 2 tablespoons, tamari (taste and adjust for saltiness)
1 teaspoon (or more if you'd like it hotter!) red chili flakes
2 teaspoons, brown sugar (optional)

Pad Thai
8-10 oz Thai-style rice noodles (some stores even sell Pad Thai noodles)
1 to 1/2 cups of pork chops (cut into pieces)
2 to 3 eggs, scrambled (optional)
4 cloves, garlic, minced
1 red pepper, diced
4 scallions, diced
1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/3 cup chopped peanuts or cashews 2 cups of mung bean sprouts (I SO wanted to add these, but my local grocery store didn't carry them...booooo!!)
1 tablespoon, butter or oil for stir-fry
lime wedges, for serving

Directions

1. Bring pot of water to boil.  Check rice noodles package for directions, because they all vary.  Once water is boiling, add in rice noodles and let boil for as long as package states.
2. While noodles are boiling, mix up sauce in bowl.  Let sit and develop flavors.   Cut pork into pieces.
3. Heat skillet on medium, high.  Add in tablespoon of butter or oil.  Saute red pepper for 3 to 4 minutes.  Add in pork and minced garlic.  Saute until pork is done to your liking.  If skillet gets too dry, add in more butter, oil or water.  Be careful to not burn the garlic.
4. Once noodles are done boiling, place them under cool water.  Drain.  Then run under cool water again.  Chop scallions, cilantro and nuts.
5. Mix up eggs and scramble them in another dish.  Set aside.
6. Add in drained noodles to skillet.
7. Add in sauce.  Mix.  Add in chopped up scrambled egg and half the nuts, cilantro and scallions.  Let cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.
8. Place in your favorite serving dish.  Sprinkle with left over nuts, cilantro and scallions and a splash of lime juice, if you'd like.
9. Turn off all distractions. Sit down by yourself or with your kids, family and/or friends.  Take a few deep breaths and say how much gratitude and love you have for your food, your family, your life. DIG IN slowly and SAVOR the deliciousness and SMILE while saying MMMMMMMMMMM.....! :)

Variations: replace pork with chicken, shrimp or tofu.  Add in more veggies of your choice...bok choy, snow peas...green pepper. 

Until next time...

Life IS delicious (even as a busy mama) ...SAVOR it up!

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