Spicy Southern-Style Stir-Fried Shrimp with Sadtaw or Fava Beans
Gkung Pad Sadtaw (or Goong Pad Sator)*
A Recipe of Kasma Loha-unchit
Recipe Copyright © 2000 Kasma Loha-unchit.
See also: Information on sataw beans (sadtaw).
(Click images to see larger version.)
- 8-10 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 serrano peppers, preferably red or orange, chopped with seeds
- 6-10 Thai chillies, preferably red, chopped
- 2 tsp. shrimp paste (gkabpi)
- 2 Tbs. peanut oil
- 1/2 cup shelled sadtaw (sataw beans), or substitute with fava beans
- 3/4 lb. medium-size shrimp, shelled and butterflied
- 2 Tbs. lime juice
- 2 tsp. palm sugar
- 2-3 tsp. fish sauce (nahm bplah), to taste (see Cooking to Taste)
- 3-4 short sprigs of green peppercorns (optional)
- 3 kaffir lime leaves, torn into small pieces
- 1 red jalapeno or fresno pepper, cut into bite-size slivers with seeds
- 1/4 cup thick coconut cream (if from can, warm through until smooth)
Heat a wok over high heat until it is begins to smoke. Swirl in the oil to coat surface and wait a few seconds for it to heat. Add the chilli paste and sauté until fragrant. Add the sadtaw or fava beans. Stir-fry 20-30 seconds. Follow with the shrimp and continue to stir-fry over high heat until most of the shrimp have started to turn pink. Season to taste with lime juice, palm sugar and fish sauce, and add the green peppercorn sprigs, kaffir lime leaves, pepper slivers and coconut cream. Stir well and when shrimp are cooked through, transfer to a serving plate.
Serves 3-4 with rice and other dishes in a shared family-style meal.
Notes and Pointers
Sadtaw is a prized vegetable in the southern region of Thailand. It actually is not a vegetable, but the young beanlike seeds of a large tree, carried in long, flat and wavy, over-sized, bright green seedpods. Each seedpod yields only a small handful of seeds. Bunches of these colorful seedpods can be seen hanging from stalls in just about every open-air marketplace in the southern provinces, as well as fruit and vegetable stands along major roadsides. Because it is fairly expensive and a delicacy, it is used sparingly, even in the dishes in which it is featured. Only a few bites of the tasty seeds with shrimp in a spicy sauce are enough to satisfy a craving. The sauce in this recipe is a truly southern combination of flavors – very pungent and meant to be eaten with plenty of rice.
I have suggested substituting the sadtaw with fava beans because they are approximately the same size and color with a slight bitter taste. Lima beans and broad beans may also be used; adjust the cooking times as needed to tenderize them.
You might enjoy learning how to Cook Thai food from Kasma in a Thai cooking class.
Kasma teaches this recipe in the Evening Series Advanced Set C-3.
*Because the Thai language has its own script, there are different ways of transliterating Thai into English. The more phonetic version is Gkung Pad Sadtaw; the more usual spelling is Goong Pad Sator. See A Note on Thai Pronunciation and Spelling.