Introduction: Pad Ka-Prao
Pad Ka-Prao - Spicy Thai Basil Stir Fry (ผัดกะเพรา)
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
7 large garlic cloves
7 Thai chilies
3 tbsp of fried shallots (optional)
30 Thai basil leaves or up to a cup of Thai basil leaves
1 tbsp of fish sauce
2 tbsp of soy sauce
1 tbsp of dark sweet soy sauce
1 tbsp of oyster sauce
~1 lb of coarse ground or minced pork
fried eggs (optional)
1. Create a coarse paste with the garlic, chilies and shallots. I used a small food processor, if you don't have one, you can chop them up together. Set aside.
2. Pre-mix the sauce ingredients (fish sauce, soy sauce, dark sweet soy sauce and oyster sauce) together in a small bowl. Set aside.
3. Heat some vegetable oil in a wok or large frying pan. Add the spice paste and fry until fragrant.
4. Once fragrant, add the minced/ground pork. Break apart with your spatula. Cook until no more pink visible.
5. Pour the sauce over the pork mixture. Stir to make sure sauce is dispersed throughout.
6. Once the meat is cooked through, turn off the heat and add the Thai basil leaves. Give it a few stirs, wilting the leaves.
7. Serve with rice and a fried egg (optional).
Try to use Thai Basil or Holy basil, sweet Italian basil will work but the taste won't be as strong.
Adjust the spice level to your liking. I only added 7 Thai chilies, when in reality, if I was making this just for myself, I would have probably used 10.
Make sure you turn on your overhead vent when you start frying. I've accidentally maced myself before while frying Thai chilies.
My Thai friend said another way of making this is omitting the soy sauces and oyster sauce and just using fish sauce and some palm sugar.
Some recipes add sugar to the sauce, but I think that the dark soy sauce and oyster sauce add enough sweetness.
Remember cooking is based on your personal preference, use everything here as a guide and adjust as you see fit.