Holy Basil Stir-Fry

Pat krapao, as it's called in Thai, is a rather 'standard' dish that you'll find available in just about every restaurant and road-side stall in Thailand. My Thai friends sometimes smile at my frequent orders for this dish, since many Thais consider it a bit pedestrian - what they order when they just can't think of anything else. I like to order pat krapao frequently not only because I like the flavor, but also because it's a remarkably flexible recipe. Every cook seems to have their own variation. Some put in more garlic, some more holy basil. In the north-east, some cooks add ginger as well. Every new stall or restaurant is an opportunity to sample a new variation on this recipe.

Pat Krapao

Stir-fried pork with holy basil and garlic

The dish is most commonly made with chicken or pork, but can also be made with minced prawn or beef. I've even seen it on offer made with frog or pigeon. You can add more vegetables to make it a bigger dish that serves more, or leave them out entirely if you plan to serve it with several other dishes. As I said, this is an infinitely variable dish, so use your own creativity to make your own signature dish.

(4 Servings)

Vegetable (or Olive) Oil2 Tbl
Ground pork or chicken100 g
Garlic2 TblGround
Holy Basil Leaves4 g
Mouse Dropping Chilies1 tsp td>Ground
Red Spur Chili1 TblSliced diagonally
Soy Sauce1 ½ Tbl
Long Beans30 gCut in segments
Baby Corn30 gSliced (optional)
Oyster Sauce½ T
Sugar1 Tbl

Preparation Method

  • Heat the vegetable oil in the wok. Put in the finely chopped garlic, mouse-dropping chillies and meat, and stir-fry until cooked.
  • Season with soy sauces, oyster sauce, sugar, spur chilli, fresh hot basil leaves and vegetables.
  • Transfer to a serving dish.
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