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Basil Chicken

At a dinner party last week, the question was asked, “After a long trip away from home, what is the first thing you eat?” For me it’s either something with rice or pesto linguine.  Basil chicken is that ‘something’ that goes with rice after a long trip away from my kitchen.  Don’t get me wrong, I love to travel and try different foods, but in the end and after eating non-stop at restaurants, nothing beats a good home cooked meal.

The sauce recipe is from Simply Thai Cooking – a mainstay on my recipe shelf

1 small onion slice thin
2 carrots cut crosswise 1/8″ thickness
1 small red pepper sliced into thin strips
2 cups broccoli florets
12 oz chicken breast, sliced crosswise into 1/4″ thickness
2 garlic cloves minced
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup shredded Thai basil
Oil for stir fry

In separate bowls, prepare the following sauces:
Sauce 1:
2 Tablespoons fish sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
2 Tablespoons soy sauce

Sauce 2:
2 Tablespoons oyster sauce
4 Tablespoons water
1 teaspoon Thai chili paste

Sauce 3:
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 Tablespoons water

In a large fry pan or a wok, heat oil in medium-high heat.  Stir fry the onions until softened.  Add the carrots and red pepper and stir fry for 1 minute, then add the broccoli.  Stir fry all vegetables until crisp tender. Remove the vegetables from the pan and keep warm in a bowl.  Add more oil if needed to the pan/wok.  Add the garlic and pepper flakes and stir-fry until the garlic is fragrant – about 1 minute.  Add the chicken and stir fry until cooked.  Then add the vegetables back to the pan.

Add the sauces to the pan in order, making sure that each sauce is thoroughly mixed before adding the next.

Once all the sauces are added, add the basil to the pan and stir until the leaves are just wilted.  Serve over rice immediately.


  1. Rather than using a wok, I prefer a large non-stick fry pan.  I don’t like using a lot of oil in my cooking.
  2. Original Thai cooking uses bok choy rather than broccoli.  I just prefer broccoli to bok choy.
  3. If Thai basil is hard to find, I use a mixture of regular basil and cilantro leaves.

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