This is a super simplified version of everyone’s favorite Thai dish Pad Krapow Gai, possibly the most popular dish in Thailand, even more so than Pad Thai, which is a fake thing invented in the 50s. Properly speaking, Thai Basil Chicken should be made with holy basil (that’s what kra pow means), but as this is dinner and chill, any basil will do, or even arugula. This dish comes together in 10 minutes with only 7 ingredients and tastes like a million dollars. The most important part is the eggs, which really take things to the next level. It’s spicy, savory, and the perfect answer to a long stressful day at work.
If you can get it, holy basil is where it’s at, but then after that, sub with Thai basil, then regular fresh sweet basil, or if you’re feeling really adventurous, arugula, which has a little bit of the pepperiness of holy basil (or even a mix).
The secret to Thai eggs is getting a lot of oil (say 2-3 tablespoons) very hot and then almost deep frying your eggs. Crack your eggs, one at a time, into a bowl so you can drop it in more evenly. Spoon hot oil over the uncooked parts to baste the eggs so that the edges don’t brown too too much, unless you’re into that, which I am.
Thai peppers are very very spicy. Frying them mellows out the spice a little, but if you’re not feeling adventurous, you can substitute for any red pepper of any spiciness.
Oyster sauce can be found in the Asian aisle of any grocery store. If you see the Lee Kum Kee bottle with the painted label, go for that one. It’s a few dollars more but much better than the red panda label.
What do you need?
A garlic press and a mortar and pestle help a lot but aren’t necessary.
How do you serve it?
Serve over rice or with noodles. Just be sure to include the fried egg.
Weeknight Thai Basil Chicken Recipe
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp oyster sauce
- 2 eggs
- 5-10 chilies, roughly chopped
- 8 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped
- 1lb ground chicken or turkey
- 1 cup basil, leaves only
1. Pre-measure your soy sauce and oyster in a small bowl.
2. Fry your eggs sunny side up in a generous amount of oil over high heat, one at a time. When done, transfer to a plate and set aside.
3. Fry your garlic and chilies until fragrant – about 20 seconds.
4. Fry your ground chicken or turkey. Don’t break it up too much, allow it to form a crust.
5. When your meat is browned to your liking, add the sauce and toss until evenly coated. Remove from heat and add basil, toss until the basil is wilted.
6. Serve over rice and topped with the fried eggs.
Welcome to Dinner & Chill, a new series focusing on quick & easy weeknight dinners with easy to find ingredients, no special equipment, low prep, and low effort. Less shopping, less chopping, less mopping, more eating.