Growing up, my favorite take-out nights were when my dad would go to Tara Thai and come home with larb gai, chicken satay, shrimp pad thai, and, my absolute favorite, beef kapow. I would take a little of everything else and hoard as much of the kapow as I could. Side story: my mom had surgery for a torn ACL a few years ago right before my birthday, so I spent the night at my parents' house the night before my birthday since she was immobile. My parents told me they planned to have some of the food their friends had dropped off but asked if I wanted anything different for my birthday dinner; I asked for Tara Thai and asked my dad to just get all of the usual stuff. It wasn't until he got home and we sat down to dinner that I realized my parents STILL planned to eat the food their friends dropped off, and my dad had unquestioningly gotten me FOUR meals for my dinner. Best. Birthday. Ever.
After I moved out of the house and away from Tara Thai, I tried to find the same dish at all of the local Thai restaurants. Through those explorations, I learned that what I knew as "kapow" was known by any number of names, including, but not limited to: krapow, gra pow, gra prow, pad gra prao.... So basically, now I just look for anything that rhymes with kapow and I'm a happy camper.
While I now frequent the Thai restaurant around the corner from our apartment for my beef kapow, I decided to try to make a lighter version myself for those nights I can't justify take-out. I used chicken instead of beef in this recipe, and I skipped the added sugar that many of the recipes call for. That said, if you DO prefer beef, you can do this exact same thing with sliced stir-fry beef! After a particularly emotional past few days (lookin' at you, Election 2016), I invited my sister over for dinner and more wine than appropriate for a Wednesday. She can vouch for me that not only is this recipe easy, but it's also delicious! I served it over steamed cauliflower rice, but this is great with brown rice or jasmine rice too. Enjoy!
Thai Chicken Krapow
- 1 lb chicken breast, sliced
- 1 white onion, sliced
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 2 serrano peppers, minced
- 2 cups Thai basil leaves
Marinade chicken in soy sauce, fish sauce, oyster sauce, and serrano peppers for at least 10 minutes. Pro tip: if you put the chicken in the freezer for 20 minutes before slicing, it's much easier to thinly slice.
Heat olive oil over low-medium heat. Add garlic and onions and sautee until onions are soft. Remove and set aside cooked garlic/onions.
Add chicken and marinade to pan and cover, stirring occasionally. Cook until chicken is cooked through, 6-7 minutes. Add Thai basil and cook until wilted. Return onions to pan and stir to combine everything, and serve!