Our first two months living in Thailand were spent living on the 33rd floor of the Emporium Suites in Krung Thep (Bangkok). Our apartment was next to Benjasiri Park where locals practiced tai chi in the mornings, steps away from the BTS, and right next to a fantastic shopping mall (just one of so many in BKK). When the husband was at work, I would fill my days with seeing what my new neighborhood had to offer and finding the best lunches. It was in the shopping center where I often frequented to get lunch and where I had pad krapow gai for the first, but not the last, time.
Pad Krapow Gai literally translates to: Stir-fried (pad) basil (krapow) chicken (gai). I learned how to cook this dish when I took a two-day cooking course. I am so happy I did because I often make this about once a week.
When we moved to Pattaya I found the best pad krapow gai in the basement food court at the largest mall in town. I dream about that dish to this day and miss it but luckily I can make my version here at home. Below is my recipe.What you will need:
1 lb ground chicken, beef (nua) or pork (moo) can be used as well
5 cloves garlic, minced
2-5 Thai chilies
5 kaffir lime leaves, thinly sliced
1 bunch of Thai basil, just the leaves
1 T oyster sauce
1 T fish sauce
1 T seasoning sauce
1 tsp sugar
2-3 oz chicken stock or water
2 T oil for cooking
Veggies of your choice **
What you will do:
1. Add oil to wok and heat over medium/high heat. Add garlic and chilies and stir until an aroma develops.
2. Add ground chicken and stir to cook. Use a spatula to break up chicken. When chicken is almost cooked through, add veggies and seasonings (oyster sauce, fish sauce, seasoning sauce, sugar and chicken stock). Continue to stir-fry.
3. When chicken is cooked through, turn the heat off and add the basil until wilted.
4. Serve with white rice and a fried egg.
** For this version, I added sliced yellow onions and mushrooms. In Thailand, this dish can be seen served with pieces of long beans or baby ear corn, or with no added veggies at all. It is a good recipe to use left over veggies from the fridge and a great way to sneak them in.
Cheers and happy eating!