Thursday, August 8, 2013

pad gkaprow mu: thai basil pork

After my success with cooking Three Cups Chicken a couple of weeks ago, I found myself in *strong like* with Thai basil.

I was looking recipes that contained Thai basil and I found one - Thai Basil Pork. We do not eat a lot of Thai food, but I remember I had eaten this a few times in the past and I had liked it.

I had no idea how to cook this so I looked around, compared a few recipes, picked the one that made the most sense to me, and tried it out.

In a bowl, I combined fish sauce, soy sauce, oyster sauce and brown sugar.

I whisked the sauces and sugar and set this aside.

I also plucked the basil leaves (and discarded the stems) and cut the chilli.

In a heated wok, I fried the shallots, followed by the minced garlic.

As soon as the garlic started to brown at the edges, I added the ground pork.

I stir fried the pork until it started to change from pink to brown.

Then I added the chilli, followed by the sauces, and continued to fry the meat.

And once the meat was cooked, I added the basil and turned off the heat.

Once the basil had wilted, the dish was ready.

It was served hot, with rice.

It was a pretty good effort for my first attempt at cooking Thai Basil Pork.  :)

Pad Gkaprow Mu (Serves 4-6)
Adapted from recipe from The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook

2 tablespoons canola oil
600g ground pork (or chicken/turkey, or seafood)
3 cups packed fresh holy basil or Thai basil leaves
6 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
3 small shallots (or 1/2 small onion), cut into thin slices (1/2 cup)
6 red Thai chilies, cut into rounds (or to taste)
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons brown sugar
Dash white pepper or freshly ground black pepper (optional)

Preheat a 14-inch wok or 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Swirl in oil to coat the bottom of the wok and heat for 10 to 15 seconds until oil thins out and starts to shimmer. Stir in garlic and shallots. Stir 15 to 20 seconds, until garlic is light golden and fragrant.
Add pork, breaking it up with the edge of your spatula. Stir-fry until meat has just lost its blush, about 1 to 2 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium. Throw in chilies. Sprinkle oyster, fish and soy sauces and sugar, and toss to mix well. Add basil and stir until leaves are wilted and pork is cooked through, about half to 1 minute. Don’t overcook the pork.
Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with pepper. Serve hot with steamed rice.
Note: If you can’t find Thai chilies, substitute with 4 to 6 serranos or jalapeños, cut into large slivers.


  1. What?! That's it?! Man I'm going to try this! I love this dish!

  2. Yes Adora, that's it. I was surprised at how easy it was too!!