What could be simpler! Pop it in the microwave for 2 minutes and you have authentic Thai food! Not so fast…
This is an item that’s been haunting Trader Joe’s shelves for a few years and I had never bought because, well I can get outstanding Pad Thai locally at several Thai restaurants. Plus, I’m not a Vegan so I would never pick this up, but in light of this blog and the many vegan people out there I feel their pain at getting good, animal free products.
Pad Thai (aka: Phat Thai or Phad Thai) is kind of a catch all for any stir fried rice noodle dish. Typically with bean sprouts, chicken, eggs, lime, coriander and peanuts. But in reality can be made with seafood, pork or just about anything. Kind of like Chinese Fried Rice where just about anything can go into the dish. Over the years I’ve had some excellent and awful Pad Thai. I’ve even tried to make it on my own on several occasions with mixed results.
I’m always on the hunt for healthy and quick meals, especially for lunch around my house. While I work from home and have access to everything in the kitchen, I like to have fast and easy things so I don’t waste time cooking up something and can concentrate on work. My time is limited because the kids come home around 4pm and my work day is essentially over. This Pad Thai looked like it might fit the bill for a quick and easy lunch and at a good price! ($1.99)
OK, I’ll be quick and to the point here. This Pad Thai just doesn’t cut it in my book. I know it’s vegan, and really quick, but I’m sure there are other ways to make a quick and easy version of this that had more going for it. The noodles were actually OK, and I liked that you can just pop the whole thing in the microwave and eat it out of the box. But all it really is are noodles and sauce. The sauce is mildly interesting with some heat and sweetness to it. There were little bits of peanuts in there too. This is a Product of Thailand, but that didn’t make it any more authentic.
I know this defeats the purpose of this dish, but this is the type of Trader Joe’s product that is just hankering for some fixing up. Some chicken, eggs, bean sprouts, limes and thai basil and you are almost there to a real Pad Thai! It kills the whole Vegan thing, but really what you have here is an unfinished dish!
Not my favorite and I think there are much better vegan items in the store that are just as quick and easy to make at work or for a quick lunch at home.
I am going to rate this one 5 bells!