Pad Kra Pow Gai – Spicy Thai Basil Chicken


The perks of growing up in a country that shares a border with Thailand, is that really good Thai food is readily available. 

And this is the one thing that all three of us – my mum, dad and I can agree on unanimously when it comes to going out for a meal. The only issue that does come up however is how spicy we want everything. My mum and I want the real deal and are only happy once tears are streaming down our faces as we continue to slurp up our tom yum soup, while the only fully brown person (my dad) cannot take the heat and wants everything to be mild. Which is fine really, but frustrates my mother to no end because every single time my dad orders and asks them to not make it so spicy, they look over at my mother knowingly and nod (#angmohproblems) – which she takes as a personal affront on her rather high tolerance of spicy food. 

Dan – much to my father’s amusement and my relief, loves spicy food and sometimes takes it a step too far despite the heartburn. You will now gladly see him prepping his birds eye chillies in soy sauce as he waits for his meal – cause it just makes everything better. 

But enough about them – back to Thai food and specifically Thai Basil Chicken or Pad Kra Pow Gai. This dish is quite possibly my favourite dish of all time. In fact, I don’t think I have ever been to a Thai restaurant without ordering it. And for many years it remained something I would long for and crave until the next time we went out for a meal. Why didn’t I try to make it myself? I honestly do not know, it just seemed like some magical Thai recipe I could never replicate until I watched a lady in Phuket prepare the dish at a hawker stall.

Maybe it was desperation on my part? Or the fact that I keep converting currency and cannot justify paying for it in a restaurant here? Whatever my motivation was – I would like to believe (and this will now be the real story forever) that I had a moment of revelation and was inspired by the woman at the stall as I watched her throw it all together in a hot wok, believing that perhaps even I could make this myself.

And after many a try I think I have gotten it just right. Quick to throw together and delicious, it is has now become a staple quick meal in our home. 


Recipe (for 2 portions)

300 grams chicken fillets diced – you can use mince pork/mince chicken to be quick
225 grams/1.5 cup French beans diced 
4 red bird’s eye chillies diced
2 teaspoons of Batt’s Easy diced garlic (Or dice 5 cloves of garlic yourself)
30grams Thai basil (if you cannot find Thai basil, you can use normal basil though it makes a huge difference)
1 tablespoon Thai fish Sauce 
1 tablespoon of Oyster Sauce 
1 teaspoon of dark soy sauce 
1 teaspoon of light soy sauce 
100ml of water


Method in Video form!

Serve with hot white rice and to really seal the deal – a sunny side up egg.

Let me know what you think and hope you enjoy the recipe!

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