Minced Chicken and Cashew with Thai Basil

By • July 7, 2010 • 16 Comments

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Author Notes: This dish originated from Thailand and is loved by all over the world. I learnt how to cook this delicious recipe in a Thai Cooking Workshop. The original version does not contain cashews however adding these only enhances the taste! - MummysLittleHelperMummysLittleHelper

Food52 Review: Tasty and simple. You get lots of Thai basil and it's flavor. It didn't say when to add the onions so I threw them in with the garlic. It's a very yummy salty sauce with lots of crunchy nuts. - StephanieA&M

Serves 2

  • 2 cups minced chicken breast
  • 1/2 cup roasted unsalted cashew nuts
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup white onion
  • 1 cup Thai basil (if unavailable, use normal basil)
  • 3 tablespoons oil (peanut is best)
  • 11/2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 11/2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon light soya sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon dark soya sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 splash water (optional)
  1. Mix the sauces in a cup with the sugar - stir to dissolve.
  2. Heat a wok or frying pan on medium to high flame for 20 seconds. Add 3 tablespoons oil and swirl the wok/frying pan so that the oil is evenly distributed.
  3. Add minced garlic and fry for 10 seconds. Quickly add minced chicken and continue frying until chicken turns white.
  4. Pour the sauces into the chicken and mix well. Add the basil and fry for another 30 seconds. If the chicken looks dry, add a splash of water. Throw in the cashew nuts and turn the flame off. Stir the cashew nuts into the chicken.
  5. This dish goes well with rice. As an alternative, pop some pita bread into the bread toaster for a couple of minutes. Make a small pocket in the pita and fill with the Chicken and Cashew with Thai Basil. Bon Appetit!
Jump to Comments (16)

Tags: salty, sweet

Comments (16) Questions (0)

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about 1 month ago Jara

What can I use instead of the oyster sauce? I have Hoisin on hand.

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about 1 month ago JohnL

If you're going to be doing any Asian cooking, you should get a little bottle of oyster sauce--it will last indefinitely in the refrigerator; and it's also great in fried rice. It's not as sweet as hoisin, so if you go that route, I would cut back on the sugar. If I had to make this dish without oyster sauce, I would consider replacing it with Namprik Pao. I like the version sold by Maesri in a 16 oz jar. For some reason, Maesri's Namprik Pao in the smaller jar is different.

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about 1 month ago JohnL

Not suggesting you hunt down namprik pao, I just happen to keep it on hand. It is a WONDERFUL seasoning paste used in Thai cooking.

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7 months ago AmyB

Made this tonight and it was great. Added some chili paste to the sauce and threw in some steamed broccoli at the end to take the place of the rice. Great weeknight dinner.

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7 months ago Nuala

Thanks for a great recipe! Quick, delicious, and satisfying. I'll definitely be making this again.

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9 months ago JohnL

I think this is the first Food52 recipe I've tried, and I was happy with the authentic flavor--just like I remember in Thai restaurants. The cashews were not really necessary, but I included them and thought it worked together well. Only thing I added was hot pepper because I like my Thai Basil Chicken SPICY. Another thing this recipe has going for it is that it is quick and easy enough for weekday dinner. Well done MummysLittleHelper!

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10 months ago MzzFoggy

Is "minced" chicken the same as ground chicken? The photo shows what looks like cut-up pieces of chicken. Which is it?

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10 months ago kstallbe

I use ground pork and then put it over broad rice noodles and stir it all together, then garnish with the cashews. I think it would just depend on what you want to do with it.

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10 months ago Andrea

Where does the onion fit? Chopped? Throw in with garlic?

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10 months ago kstallbe

I make this regularly. I add it before the garlic.

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almost 2 years ago kstallbe

Just made this (without a wok) and was amazing! Better than any Thai restaurant I've had this dish at here in NYC. Thanks so much for sharing!!

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about 4 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Yummm. Making this one tonight. Congrats on the EP!! ;o)

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about 4 years ago MummysLittleHelper

Hi Antonia,

I was curious how the recipe went?

MumsLittleHelper

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about 4 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Well, the sauce was sweeter than we like, perhaps due to the brand of oyster sauce that I used, so I cut it with some dry white wine, which made it more palatable. (I had not even added the teaspoon of sugar when I taste tested the sauce.) Also, we found the basil leaves, as one taster described it, "a bit overwhelming." I would probably coarsely chop them next time instead of throwing them in whole.

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about 1 month ago JohnL

Duangrat's Thai restaurant in Falls Church, VA has a dish called Chicken Horapa (I think Horapa means basil) and the way they present the dish is with a full branch of basil added as a garnish. It's up to the diner to add it or not; they often present cilantro similarly, alongside their spring rolls in Vietnamese restaurants. Personally, I like the basil (and lots of it) wilted into the dish just like this recipe directs.

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about 4 years ago slulibby

This sounds fantastic. I know it is potent, but fish sauce is so great with basil. like this idea a lot