One great thing about takeaway food is that you can try out a lot of new flavours.

However, these dishes are even better when you make them at home from scratch and I have two delicious recipes that you will enjoy making yourself below. I call these two recipes “takeaway my way”.

For the pad Thai stir-fried noodles make sure you use some good-quality Irish pork. I am using the fillet here, which is very lean and tender.

There are a lot of interesting products in this recipe. Dunnes Stores has a very good Asian range now but there are some ingredients, like shrimp paste, that you might have to get at an Asian market. It is fine if you can’t get it, but it gives a lovely richness. If you cannot get palm sugar you could use regular sugar. I always keep Thai fish sauce, known as nam pla, in the cupboard.

Satay prawn sticks with grilled limes. \ Food styling: Janine Kennedy. Photography: Philip Doyle.

You can have each of these meals as mild or as hot as you want. You could use a little dried chilli but be careful as it is hot.

Bean sprouts give great crunch and texture. You could make this vegetarian by using tofu instead of pork. I also like it with prawns or chicken.

The best pad Thai noodles I ever had were when I was sitting in a small rickety chair on a Bangkok pavement. This is my version.

On to the satay prawn sticks and I love the combination of flavours here. You could use white or red wine vinegar. You could also use Thai Gold satay sauce.

I have used Tiger prawns in this and not the Dublin Bay ones as they are a little firmer in texture. If you like these recipes it is well worth going to your local Asian market and having a good look around.

Happy cooking,


Satay prawn sticks with grilled limes

Satay prawn sticks with grilled limes. \ Food styling: Janine Kennedy. Photography: Philip Doyle.

12 bamboo skewers

3 limes

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

120ml (4fl oz) coconut milk

6 tbsp light soy sauce

2 tsp palm sugar

24 raw, headless tiger prawns, tails intact – about 600g (1lb 5oz)

Spring onion and red chilli curls, to serve

Rapeseed oil, for brushing

Steamed Thai fragrant rice, to serve

Dipping sauce:

50ml (2fl oz) rice wine vinegar

1 tsp palm sugar

1 baby cucumber or a 5cm (2in) piece, seeded and finely chopped

1 bird’s eye red chilli, seeded and finely chopped

2 tsp chopped roasted peanuts

  • 1 Grate the rind from one of the limes and squeeze out the juice. Place both in a non-metallic dish and add the garlic, coconut milk, soy sauce and palm sugar. Mix well to combine, then add the prawns. Set aside to marinade for about 15 minutes (or up to two hours in the fridge is fine).
  • 2 Cut the remaining two limes into small wedges (you’ll need 12 wedges). To make the dipping sauce, whisk together the vinegar and palm sugar in a small bowl, then add in the cucumber and chilli. Transfer to small serving bowls and sprinkle over the peanuts.
  • 3 To make spring onion and red chilli curls, cut the green parts of one or two spring onions into two or three segments, then slice lengthways as thinly as possible with a paring knife. Place in a bowl of ice water for a few minutes, until they start to curl up. Remove and set aside.
  • 4 Cut the red chilli in half lengthways and scrape out the seeds, then slice lengthways into very thin strips and place in the bowl of ice water until they start to curl up too.
  • 5 To thread the skewers, push two marinated prawns on to each bamboo skewer and finish with a lime wedge. Alternatively, you could use 12 x 15cm (6in) metal skewers.
  • Satay prawn sticks with grilled limes. \ Food styling: Janine Kennedy. Photography: Philip Doyle.

    Pad Thai stir-fried noodles with pork

    Serves four

    175g (6oz) Thai flat rice noodles

    100g (4oz) roasted peanuts

    Juice of 2 limes

    1 red bird’s eye chilli, finely sliced

    3 tbsp Thai fish sauce (nam pla)

    2 tsp rice vinegar

    2 tsp dark soy sauce

    1 tsp shrimp paste (from a jar)

    1 tsp palm sugar (optional)

    2 tbsp rapeseed oil

    350g (12oz) piece of pork fillet, well trimmed, halved and thinly sliced

    2 eggs, beaten

    2 shallots, finely sliced

    2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

    200g (7oz) beansprouts

    4 spring onions, trimmed and thinly sliced

    2 tbsp roughly chopped fresh coriander, plus extra sprigs to garnish

    Lime wedges, to serve

  • 1 Soak the noodles in a large bowl with enough boiling water to cover them for 15 minutes, until softened and pliable. Drain the noodles in a colander, then place in a pan of boiling water and simmer for 45 seconds, until tender, or according to the packet instructions. Drain well.
  • 2 Meanwhile, blend the roasted peanuts in a mini blender or roughly grind using a pestle and mortar. Set aside.
  • 3 Mix together the lime juice, chilli, fish sauce, rice vinegar, soy sauce, shrimp paste and the palm sugar, if using, in a small bowl and set aside.
  • 4 Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a wok until very hot, then stir-fry the pork for about 5 minutes, until cooked through and just turning golden.
  • 5 Remove with a slotted spoon and cover loosely with foil to keep warm.
  • 6 Pour in the eggs and quickly swirl the wok so that the egg sticks to the sides in a thin, even layer. Leave for about 30 seconds, until the eggs are just set, then break into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Remove and set aside with the pork.
  • 7 Wipe the wok with kitchen paper and return it to a medium heat, adding the remaining oil. Stir-fry the shallots, garlic, beansprouts, spring onions and corriander for 2-3 minutes, until softened and just beginning to brown.
  • 8 Pour the lime juice mixture into the wok and simmer for 1-2 minutes, until it has reduced and thickened slightly.
  • 9 Toss in the noodles until all combined. Garnish with a wedge of lime and some chopped corriander and serve.
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