I love walking around the produce section when I visit my local Asian market. The market has a pretty complete selection when it comes to Asian fruits, herbs, and vegetables, but no two visits are the same. This last trip netted me some lovely Thai basil leaves, which I quickly use up to prepare this quick and yummy Thai stir-fried chicken with basil and chilies.
If you are looking for a quick and satisfying meal, then this 20-minute dish from start to finish should be a perfect choice. Other than Thai basil, which we will need them to be as fresh as possible, the remaining ingredients are common pantry ingredients, especially if you often prepare Asian dishes.
Ingredients for Thai stir-fried chicken with basil and chilies
1. Chicken breast/thigh meat
We need 500 grams (~ 1.1 lb) of bite-size chicken meat. You can use either chicken breast or chicken thigh.
2. Thai basil
You can get fresh Thai basil from an Asian market in the produce section. Thai basil is the same as lemon basil or Lao basil. If you are Indonesian, this is the same as kemangi. These leaves don’t stay fresh for long, so plan to use them within two days of buying.
3. Bird-eye chilies
I usually use bird-eye chilies for this dish, but if you want a milder dish, feel free to use cayenne or Fresno.
4. Garlic and seasonings
We will need garlic, sugar, fish sauce, and dark soy sauce. You can substitute dark soy sauce with regular soy sauce, but be sure to use low-sodium soy sauce, or the dish may be too salty. Also, you won’t get the same dark color sauce if you don’t use dark soy sauce.
Heat oil in a wok over medium-high heat and sauté minced garlic and chopped chilies until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes.
Add bite-size chicken meat and stir until no longer pink.
Season with sugar, fish sauce, and dark soy sauce. Cook until the sauce is boiling, and the chicken is cook.
Stir in Thai basil leaves, reserving about a dozen leaves for garnish. Turn off the heat once the leaves wilt.
Transfer the dish to a serving plate, garnish with the reserved leaves, and serve immediately with steamed white rice. The best choice for rice would be Thai jasmine rice.
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