If you're looking to spice up your Meatless Monday meals, you're in luck; this week, we've scoured the web for the very best in meatless Thai recipes. Thai cuisine is one that lends itself particularly well to vegetarian cooking, with one exception: fish sauce. Once you've found a way around this crucial Thai ingredient, Meatless Monday Thai cuisine is a snap.
As for the fish sauce, some people swear by a combination of pineapple juice and soy sauce; others let the rest of the ingredients create the balance that Thai food is known for. Once you've found the perfect equilibrium amongst sweet, salty, sour and spicy flavors, you'll be in Thai food heaven.
Start things off with a tasty vegetarian pad thai recipe. This Thai classic is probably the most emblematic dish of the cuisine, particularly in the West. The stir fried noodles are seasoned with a flavorful sauce, a good amount of vegetables and crunchy peanuts. This dish is made even better with a bit of egg scrambled right in with the noodles, which will add some meatless protein. Using vermicelli rice noodles instead of the flat rice stick usually called for is a variation called woon sen pad thai and is just as delicious.
Image: Kimberley Stakal
Thai cuisine has a heavy hand with peanuts, and this fresh and flavorful Thai salad is no exception. The peanut butter based dressing makes it hearty and substantial, and the variety of vegetables makes this easy dish a colorful addition to your Meatless Monday table. A hint of Sriracha adds just the right amount of spice, but those who like hot dishes may want to add even more!
Image: David Lifson
Our Thai-style sweet potato mash retains the Thai balance of sweet and savory flavors. Seasonal sweet corn and sweet potatoes get a hint of habanero spice and a good amount of seasoning savoriness from cumin, turmeric and thyme. This dish is the perfect side, but you can also serve it as-is for a flavorful, colorful main.
Image: Kent Wang
Dessert or drinks... either way, Thai iced tea is the way to go. Black tea, sugar and the milk of your choice -- coconut, cow's, half-and-half -- make this sweet, tasty and refreshing treat, perfect for sipping poolside, a mid-afternoon pick-me-up or an evening post-dinner drink... especially after all that spice!
Top image: tuxta