Thai Basil Chicken

We’ve been making a variation on Gai Paht Bai Graprao from Nancy McDermott’s Real Thai
cookbook for awhile, but tonight it came out even better than usual thanks to the addition of coconut butter: I don’t think we’ll ever go back; it was that good.

  • 1.5 lbs chicken, cut into small, bite-sized pieces
  • 2 Tbs coconut oil
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbs garlic-chili sauce
  • 2 Tbs fish sauce
  • 1 Tbs water
  • 1 Tbs soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs brown rice syrup (you can substitute brown sugar, but if you have rice syrup on hand, it provides a subtle sweetness that blends nicely with the jasmine rice)
  • 2 Tbs coconut butter
  • 2 cups sweet peppers, seeded and thinly sliced into rings
  • 1 cup basil leave, coarsely torn
  • Jasmine or long-grain rice to serve

Prep veggies, then chicken (to minimize opportunity for cross-contamination). Put rice on to cook.

Heat wok or large skillet over medium-high heat, and when hot add coconut oil. Add garlic and chili suace. Stir-fry for a few seconds to heat the garlic and chili and infuce the oil, then add chicken. Stir fry the chicken until it changes color and is nearly done.

Add fish sauce, water, and soy, and cook for a minute or so. Add rice syrup (or sugar) and stir fry for another minute. Add peppers and stir fry until they soften slightly, then add coconut butter and basil and cook until the basil wilts and the coconut butt incorporates into the sauce.

Remove from heat and serve over rice. Serves 4 (or 2 with leftovers for lunch.

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