Khao Phad Gai (Thai Chicken Fried Rice)

Khao Phad Gai (Chicken Fried Rice)A perennial takeaway favourite in our household, Thai-style Chicken Fried Rice (Khao Phad Gai) is one of the few dishes that both my partner and I enjoy eating, albeit with a few differences in our taste preferences. Naturally I like mine hot and spicy, whereas my partner’s is a somewhat more muted affair without any chilli or garlic. To my mind, the lack either of these elements seems like an affront to Thai cooking, but each to their own, I guess.

Along with an obligatory side order of Tom Yum Goong, Khao Phad Gai has a special place in my recent food history. It may be a simple meal, but this takeaway (along with a lot of red wine) was an absolute Godsend during a particularly stressful house-move – something I will forever be grateful for. Ordered almost every other night, we would sit, wine in hand, in amongst our half-packed boxes watching episodes of “Orange is the New Black”, tucking into our Khao Phad. None of it may have been very classy, but for a short while at least, this became our new normal.

Almost a year later, we don’t order Khao Phad as often as we did back then, but we still enjoy eating it now and again. After a rather disappointing order, though, I decided to try my hand at making it myself. Personally I prefer my own efforts, but my partner thinks otherwise. Apparently my version is “too flavoursome” for his delicate tastes – in my book that can never be a bad thing! As I said before, each to their own.

imageAs with most Asian food, the key to success is preparation…and a hot wok. Typically, 90% of any Asian stir-fry is prep-work, as the actual cooking usually takes just a few minutes – so make sure you have all you ingredients chopped and ready to go. Stir-frying can be fast and furious, and you don’t want to be faffing around with a carrot while your onions burn!

For more delicious Thai recipes please click here, or if you need tips on stocking your Thai Pantry please click here.

Khao Phad Gai (Thai Chicken Fried Rice): Serves 2

  • 1 skinless chicken breast
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • 1 tbsp. cornflour
  • 1/2 tbsp. fish sauce
  • 2 cups day old cooked jasmine rice
  • 2 eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or minced
  • 1/2 onion, finely sliced
  • 1 medium carrot, julienned
  • 1/2 cup green beans, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cauliflower florets
  • 1 ripe tomato, quartered
  • 2 spring onions, sliced
  • 1 lemon or lime

STIR-FRY SAUCE:

  • 1/2 tbsp. oyster sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp. soya sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. fish sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp. lime juice
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • A dash of white pepper

Method:

  1. Thinly slice the chicken across the grain and on the diagonal
  2. Place the cornflour in a bowl, add the fish sauce and water. Mix to combine
  3. Add the sliced chicken and coat with cornflour mixture. Leave to marinate at room temperature for at least 20 minutes
  4. Place all the stir-fry sauce ingredients in a bowl, mix until combined
  5. Heat a little oil in a wok on a high heat
  6. Add beaten egg and fry until set, remove and set to one side
  7. Clean out the wok with some kitchen paper
  8. Again add a little more oil and heat till just smoking
  9. Drain the chicken from the marinate and then add to the wok
  10. Stir-fry until just cooked (about 3 to 4 minutes), remove and set to one side
  11. Clean out the wok with some kitchen paper
  12. Add a final splash of oil and add the onions and carrots, stir-fry over a high heat until they begin to soften
  13. Add the garlic, cauliflower and chopped green beans. Cook for another couple of minutes
  14. Return the chicken to the wok and fry for another minute
  15. Pour in the sauce and continue frying until all the vegetables are tender
  16. Add the rice and mix to combine with the sauce
  17. Return the cooked egg to the wok and mix in amongst the rice
  18. Continue to stir-fry vigorously until the rice is heated through completely and no longer looks “wet”
  19. Add the tomato wedges and spring onions, fold to combine and stir-fry for one final minute
  20. Eat immediately with a wedge of lemon or lime on the side

Serve with: Some chopped hot chillis, steeped in some rice vinegar or fish sauce

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