Vegan Pad Thai

Healthy eating can be such a good experience. My first week was not. I was overwhelmed to say the least. I was in pain, hungry and most of all, confused. I announced to my friends I was going vegan, which was met with equal parts support and skepticism.

“Good for you, I could never do that!”

“How will you get enough protein?”

“Paleo is much healthier. Animal products will heal you, grain is the culprit.”

I cried. A lot. I compared eating plans, I weighed my options, I got advice, I read books.

Then, my friend, Melinda, let me borrow two books by Dr. Joel Fuhrman, “Eat To Live” and “The End of Dieting.” Two words: LIFE CHANGING.

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I need to stop at this point to say that my dad has been eating like this for years, but I wasn’t in a place where I was ready to try it.  Hitting rock bottom, health-wise, was the push I needed.  Sorry, Dad!

My first vegan dinner at home consisted of me cooking normally for my family, then making myself oatmeal because I didn’t have anything I needed.

I needed to go shopping to get things, but I was too tired.  Thank goodness for Amazon Prime.  I bought tamari, oat flour, organic vegan curry paste, nutritional yeast, and tapioca flour with free next day shipping.  I was armed and dangerous!

My first meal was a curry stew. I didn’t have all the ingredients for any one recipe on Pinterest, so I picked out elements from several and made my own. It wasn’t bad.

My next meal was Vegan Pad Thai. Once again, I picked out the elements that I wanted from several different recipes.  This one was a total win! I have made this one a few times. It’s a keeper.

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Pad Thai

Serves 2-4

2 zucchini

2 carrots

1 cup broccoli

1 bell pepper

1 onion

1 small handful rice noodles

1/4 tsp. fresh grated ginger

1/2 lime, juiced

1 tsp. fresh chopped garlic

1 Tbsp. Tamari or soy sauce

2 small dates

1 Tbsp. sesame butter

Cayenne pepper, to taste

Place a medium sauce pan filled with water on to boil.

Chop veggies into bite sized pieces. I used a spiral cutter for my zucchini.  Set aside.

Place ginger, garlic, lime juice, tamari, dates, sesame butter and cayenne in  food processor or blender. Pulse until smooth. Add water to thin if necessary.  Set aside.

Heat wok or frying pan over medium high heat. Add 1 to 2 Tbsp. water, then add veggies. Sauté until tender crisp, about 5 to 7 minutes.

While veggies are cooking, add rice noodles to boiling water and cook according to package directions. Drain and add into veggies. Remove pan from heat and stir in sauce.

Serve immediately. Garnish with chopped cilantro, fresh chopped jalapeños, lime wedges and additional cayenne pepper.

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