today i’m making: tofu & asparagus pad Thai

stir fry

I am a lazy cook. I watch my housemates lovingly stir their lasagna sauce or wait patiently while their hand crafted pies brown in the oven, and as a frequenter of the microwave, I am obviously a cheat and kitchen heathen. That’s why it’s so refreshing to come across a recipe for a meal that ticks all the crucial criteria: quick, relatively cheap, vegetarian (and vegan) friendly, filling, tasty, and easily adaptable for the solo chef. Using a hob also convinces my housemates that I am way more of a culinary wizard than I actually am. My recipe is adapted from the BBC Good Food website, and with a mere 30 minute package-to-plate time, it’s a winner for similarly tardy cooks. Stir fries are brilliant because they’re so flexible, and if you buy the ingredients for one, you’ll have them for days afterwards. My recipe here is for one person.



  • Flat rice noodles (enough for one)
  • 1 lime (save half for wedges to serve)
  • 2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce, plus extra for serving
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil or sunflower oil
  • 150g firm tofu, drained, patted dry as instructed, and cut into cubes
  • 5 asparagus spears, trimmed and sliced on the diagonal
  • 3 spring onions halved and thinly sliced lengthways
  • A few handfuls of beansprouts
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 4 mushrooms*
  • Handful each coriander leaves and chopped salted peanuts, to serve

*I used these mainly because I needed to get rid of them– but that’s the beautiful thing about a stir fry! All (most) vegetables will find a home there.



1. Before anything else, drain and press the tofu. I used the Cauldron smoked tofu, and I recommend it for a more distinct taste.

2. Cook noodles according to packet instructions

3. Heat 1 tblspoon of sunflower/vegetable oil, and throw in the tofu, allowing to fry until golden brown (this should take around 6 minutes).

4. Add another tblspoon of oil before stirring in the asparagus until tender. Add the spring onions, garlic, beansprouts, and mushroom. Persistently stir for a few more minutes, adding a pinch of salt.

5. Add a squeezed half of lime, with a few tablespoons of sweet chilli sauce, and chopped salted peanuts. Continue to stir for a few further minutes. Stir the noodles in with the vegetables.

6. Serve topped with coriander, with a few wedges of lime, and sweet chilli sauce to taste.

So simple, and so effective.

The fruits of my labour
The fruits of my labour

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