Holy Basil Chicken

I first saw a recipe for Thai Holy Basil Chicken on  Jess’ site, Inquiring Chef.    I was intrigued.   I love basil but had never heard of Holy Basil.

I began my quest at that time to find Holy Basil.   I couldn’t find seeds or plants anywhere.


Then, we traveled to the Houston area during Memorial Day Weekend and I found one!    Score!


The Holy Basil is in the foreground. Behind it is a lettuce leaf basil and a variegated basil.    Lettuce leaf basil is delicious on BLTs!     The variegated kind is awesome for pesto.

I was now ready to make Holy Basil Chicken or Kai Pad Bai Gra Prou.

I had pinned Jess’ recipe long ago but in my new quest to utilize my cookbooks, I decided to pull down one my mom got me for Christmas one year.   (Actually, I didn’t have to pull it down; it was in a stack of coffee table books on our floor. )   Asia:  The Beautiful Cookbook has hardly ever been cracked open.   Now was the time.   (I actually made Holy Basil Chicken before I posted my  Yakitori recipe from this same book.)

In the Thailand section I found an authentic recipe for Kai Pad Bai Gra Prou (or Chicken with Basil and Chili).   It was a little too authentic for me and called for chicken giblets.   I don’t do liver and I don’t do giblets.

Here is my rendition.

Holy Basil Chicken
Based on Kai Pad Bai Gra Prou from Asia:  The Beautiful Cookbook

1 lb. chicken breasts
3 T. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 serrano pepper, deseeded and minced
1 green onion, sliced thin
1/4 c. chicken stock
1 T. fish sauce
1 t. low sodium soy suace
1 t. sugar
1 c. basil, choppedl (I used a mixture of Holy Thai basil, lettuce leaf basil and pistou basil.)

Chop chicken fine (almost to  a fine, ground-like quality).

Heat oil in a wok.   When it is almost smoking, add chicken and garlic.   Stir fry for 3-4 minutes.

Add serrano and onion and saute for one minute more.

Mix together the stock, fish sauce, soy sauce, and sugar.   Add to wok and stir for about 1 minute.   Add basil and and cook for one more minute.


Ready to serve

I served this with coconut rice.   Jess, thanks for the inspiration to make this dish and procure some Holy Basil.


Please remember Abby today in your thoughts.


IMAG3786 (1)

Abby, the bee balm just started blooming in the garden (amongst all the Bermuda grass! ) I haven’t seen any butterflies or bees on it yet.

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