Thursday, March 31, 2011

Thai Basil Chicken Stir-fry

My favorite pan-Asian restaurant in Chicago is pingpong, found in the Lakeview neighborhood. They have the best stir-fry's and Pad Thai that I have found in the city so far. Lesley (my former roommate) and I discovered the restaurant 6 years ago when we first moved to Chicago and I have been going back ever since. I love that their stir-fry's are full of fresh vegetables, they offer brown rice on the side, and the dishes don't taste too oily. Plus they give you chocolate fortune cookies which are amazing!

I usually order the same thing, the Spicy Garlic Chicken, because I love it so much. Brady tends to switch up his order more often, therefore allowing me to try the other dishes on the menu.  Recently he got the Thai Basil Chicken and it was so good, I have been craving it ever since! I found a similar recipe online this week and we gave it a try. We both really liked the dish. It had a great flavor. I think we were both in agreement though that it could have had a bit more sauce so I have doubled the sauce ingredients listed below. If you like a less saucy stir-fry just half the sauce ingredients.

** The picture doesn't look like much but I promise it tastes good! 

Thai Basil Chicken Stir-fry
** adapted from Tastes of Home: Easy Asian Homecooking Recipes
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Serves 2
Prep/Cook Time: 20 minutes

2 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
handful of basil
3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 shallots, sliced thinly
2-3 Serrano chili peppers, seeded and chopped
3 T. fish sauce
1 1/2 tsp soy sauce
2-3 T. sugar- (start with 2 T and you can always add a little more)
cooked brown jasmine rice
* I would also suggest adding a sliced red pepper, we didn't have one but I think that would have been a nice addition.

Heat up a wok or large skillet until almost smoking. Add some cooking oil and swirl to coat. Turn heat to medium and add the chicken. Stir-fry till about browned on the outside (not fully cooked). Remove skillet from the heat and put chicken on a plate.

Heat up the pan again, and add a little more oil, swirling to coat. Turn heat to medium and add shallots, garlic, and chillis. Fry to aromatic. Turn heat up and quickly add chicken chunks.

Add the fish sauce, soy sauce, and sugar. Stir chicken well to coat evenly. Continue stir-frying until chicken is cooked through. Do a taste to check and see if you need more fish sauce or sugar. Quickly add in the basil and stir well to coat. Remove from the heat and serve over rice.

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