Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Thai Basil Chicken

One of our favorite meals is Thai Basil Chicken over Rice Crust (a Persian food called Tahdig in Farsi check wiki here). It was a wonderful thing to be able to go out to the back of the house and pick a bunch of Thai Basil from our yard to make the meal!!!

I collected a bowl of the Basil for our recipe. Although, we normally use more basil, but this was all I could take from the plants. The amount worked out okay.

Our Thai Basil Chicken is our own version of Gai Pad Gra Pow. Ours is different in a few ways. First, we cut up the chicken very small and R likes to cook it until it is crusty making the mixture a bit crunchy. We serve it on top of R's fantastic Rice Crust which is both soft and crunchy rice. And lastly, we make our own sauce instead of Fish Sauce which is traditionally used in Gai Pad Gra Pow.

Here's our recipe if you'd like to try it. You can use regular Bastami Rice. Someday, I'll ask R to help me with a post on how to make Rice Crust (or if you are dying to know or try it you can check My Persian Kitchen's rice crust recipe here, although you don't need to use yogurt or saffron for cooking Rice Crust (although Saffron is always nice ;). In fact, you can use potato or bread or other things at the bottom of the pan. But sometimes, it might be best just to make it simply with rice and oil. R uses a different method which appears easier than My Persian Kitchen's). Be warned, rice crust is addictive!

K and R's Basil Chicken

2 Servings

2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1½ -2 Boneless Chicken Breasts
2 Red Chili minced very small
2 Green Chili minced very small
1/4 to 1/2 Head of Garlic minced very small
1 Large Bunch of Thai Basil (cleaned and the thicker stems taken off, you can leave the flowers if your Basil has some)
Sauce (the sauce we make below is a substitute for fish sauce)
1 Tablespoon Sugar

Basmati Rice for two


Start your rice.

Make the Sauce by mixing the following ingredients:
1 Tablespoon Light Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Dark Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Fresh Squeezed Lime (or one whole lime which is a bit more)

Set Sauce aside.

Cut the chicken into very small pieces. In a Wok heat up the oil on med-high and add the chicken. When the chicken is nearly cooked add the chilies and the garlic and cook for a minute or two longer. Stir constantly over med-high heat. Do not burn the chili or the garlic. R likes to cook the mixture long enough that it gets brown and crispy. He let’s the mixture stick to the bottom of the wok and scrapes it off forming crispy bits in the mixture. But you don't have to cook the chicken that long.

When mixture is cooked, lower the heat and add the sauce and sugar cover the chicken mixture then add the basil Leaves into Wok. Turn off the heat and lightly toss all items together.

While someone is tossing the basil, someone else should be dishing up the rice on to serving plates. The basil leaves will wilt down to a smaller size and start to look like cooked spinach very quickly. Try to get the mixture out of the Wok and over the rice on the serving plates before the leaves get too wilted (they will continue to cook down on the rice).

Serve with Fresh Lime halves.


  1. Delicious. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

  2. thanks for this recipe! I love thai basil!

  3. You are welcome! Let me know if you try it!


  4. Greetings from Japan... got here through Malar's page... this dish looks so good... think I shall request my missus to cook it one day...

  5. Pad kaprao with any meat and seafood is my all time favorite Thai food dish. I grow it in my garden too!