Stir Fry Minced Beef with Sweet Holy Basil “Pad Kra Pao Neua”

Pad Kra Pao

This is certainly one of my favourite Thai street food. Simple to cook and yet so tasty. I love having this as a main course with a Tom Kha Kai for a starter and dessert as Sticky Mango with coconut rice.

· Wok

Ingredients Serves 4:
1.  2 tsp of vegetable oil
2.  4 cloves of garlic
3.  4 bird’s eye chilies
4.  200g minced beef
5.  3 ½ tsp of oyster sauce (I recommend the Thai oyster sauce for this dish, as per the picture below)
6.  4 tsp of beef stock
7.  1 tsp of sugar
8.  2 tsp of fish sauce
9.  2 kaffir lime leaves (on sale in Waitrose, though it is best to get this fresh or frozen from an oriental supermarket)
10. 2 handfuls of sweet holy basil (on sale in Waitrose- labelled as Thai basil). Note that you would need the ‘sweet’ holy basil not just a holy basil, sweet holy basil has a distinct sweet aroma and enhances the flavours of the dish.
11. A handful of fried garlic (you can either fry fresh finely chopped garlic or buy this from an oriental super market, as per the picture below)
12. A handful of coriander leaves for garnish

Oyster Sauce

Thai Oyster Sauce (picture above)

Fried Garlic (picture above)

Sweet Holy Basil

Sweet Holy Basil (picture above)

The Beef:
1. The key to this dish is a smoking hot wok and preparing all the ingredients before you begin cooking. Heat the oil in the wok until it is very, very hot. Fry the garlic and chilli for 30 seconds to a minute. Just as the garlic is browning tip in the minced beef.

2. Fry the minced beef for a minute or two until it browns. Add the beef stock, oyster sauce, fish sauce, sugar, kaffir lime leaves and sweat holy basil. There should not be too much liquid, just enough for a little sauce. Do not add too much liquid or fry the beef for too long as the beef will toughen up and it will not taste as nice.

The Egg:
For a genuine Thai style fried egg. Heat some oil in a frying pan until it is smoking hot. Crack the egg into the pan, because the pan is so hot the egg should crisp up around the edges. Move the egg from side to side, bathing the entire egg with the hot oil, as per the pictures below. This will make the egg crispy, finally turn over the egg so its semi-side up and then serve. The yolk should still be runny.

Serve with rice and a fried egg.



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