Monday 8 October 2012


I was still enjoying the last vestiges of summer when I heard the countdown for Christmas. Chunks of time seem to have disappeared and I can't remember what happened between the beginning of summer and now. I know that I can't think or move fast enough to make up for lost time but I can surely plan spending every bit of time wisely from now on.

With all the recipes I have on hand, I still am at a loss at times on what to cook for dinner. I usually just defrost something the night before and think about what to do with it the following day. I tend to cook in a hurry on weekdays and the best and quickest way for me to get dinner ready is to make a stir fry. 

I buy big trays of chicken thighs from Costco because I find that it is the most versatile part of the chicken. I can cook it on the bone or debone it and cook as steaks or slice thinly for stir fries. It has a lot more taste and texture than chicken breast and cooks in the same amount of time.

It is faster to cook this dish than than to go out to buy a takeaway. There are only a few ingredients, all of which are available at the neighbourhood supermarket. In no time, dinner is served and I can't say that anyone will be dissatisfied.

Recipe adapted from The Food of Thailand, a Journey for Food Lovers recipe for Chicken with Crispy Holy Basil Leaves.

Yield: 4 servings.


4 chicken thighs, skinned and deboned
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 red chilli, chopped
1 tbsp. fish sauce
1 tbsp. oyster sauce
cooking oil
1 medium onion, halved and sliced
1/4 c. red pepper strips
1 tbsp. brown sugar
3 tbsps. stock (any) or water
1/2 c. basil leaves (packed) plus extra for garnish


Cut the chicken into thin slices (for stir frying). 

Marinate them in a mixture of half of the garlic, chilli, fish sauce and oyster sauce. 

Heat up a wok, add 2 tbsps. of oil and stir fry half of the chicken on high heat for 3-4 minutes. Scoop up into a dish and do the same with the rest of the chicken. If done all at once, the chicken exudes juices and stews rather than fries.

You can use the same wok for the next step but take out the remaining oil. Add all of the chicken, the rest of the garlic, the onion, red pepper slices and sugar. Stir fry for 2 minutes. Add the stock and the basil. Stir fry for 1 minute. This is now done.

I used deep fried basil leaves (deep fry leaves for a few seconds) for garnish. 

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  1. If this dish is on my dining table, I definitely go for another bowl of rice! Looking deliciously flavourful. I like the way you say this "It is faster to cook this than go out to get the takeaway".

    1. It is quick and easy and nothing beats homemade right, Mel?

  2. Aren't those large packages of chicken thighs from Costco great! I always have them in the freezer. I love what you made here! So colorful and full of flavor and definite a quick and easy - my kind of dish!

  3. The dish looks very appetizing and reminds me of a smilar dish my grandma used to cook for us. Feeling hungry now...

  4. This dish looks so fresh and delicious!

  5. This dish looks yummy. When you refer to stock in your recipe, is that the same as chicken stock?

    1. Chicken stock, if you have it will be best for this dish. Any stock will do otherwise, or even just water.


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