Saturday, May 15, 2010

Spicy Chicken and Basil (with Spinach)

My fella took me to this Thai restaurant on Alberta and now I can't remember what its name was. I got a beef noodle soup which was pretty good, he got a fried catfish which was A. Mazing. It had this dark red chili sauce on it, and some bell peppers, and sauteed basil as a vegetable. I reminded me of some of the few positive experiences I had when I was living in Taiwan. I don't think I had any Thai food there, but some of the stuff I ate there was similar in retrospect. Basil used as a vegetable rather than a seasoning is one of those things.

This makes 2 dinner- sized servings for me.

Prep about 1/2 lb of chicken tenders with salt, pepper & oil. Leave them to sit in the fridge a few days. The day of, you need:

1 T oyster sauce
1 T fish sauce
1 T sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon minced lemongrass- I use a chunk of pre-minced lemongrass that came in a little vacuum sealed packet out of the frozen section at Fubonn.
3 or 4 green onions, tops & bottoms minced. This is optional because the 2nd time I made this dish, I forgot to put them in and it didn't really matter. Up to you.
1 large bunch of basil, leaves only
a double handful of fresh spinach leaves

If you want to eat it with noodles like the picture, put on a pot of salted water. The chicken takes maybe about as long to cook as the noodles do. Start the chicken at the same time the noodles go in the pot. That's if you like your noodles pretty firm.

Chop up the chicken and stir in the sesame oil, oyster sauce & fish sauce.  Heat 2 T cooking oil in a frying pan, and when it's hot enough to almost smoke, put in the pepper flakes, garlic, ginger and lemongrass, plus the onions if you've got 'em. Stir a bit until the seasonings brown and get just a tad crispy then dump in the chicken and stir really fast for about 2 more minutes. When the chicken is looking maybe half done, put the greens in the pan and keep stirring until everything is cooked through and the liquid that comes out of the greens has pretty much evaporated.

On a totally unrelated note, the hummingbirds like my sage plant.

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