Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Thai Basil with Minced Meat/Pad Ka-Prao (ผัดกะเพรา)

Ka Prao literally means the Holy Basil in Thai. It is an erect, many branched subshrub with hairy stems and somewhat crinkled green or purple leaves that are strongly scented, it is spicier in taste compared to the common Thai basil that many Thai dishes used.

Since Ka Prao is hard to come by in the Asian supermarkets here, many restaurants opted for the common Thai basil for this dish, though it is fine in the taste, it is technically no longer a "Ka Prao" in my opinion as the green leaves uses is not Ka Prao.

I had to grow my own Holy basil this year since I really missed the real Ka Prao that I had in Thailand. I bought two Tulsi/Tulasi plants in the earlier months from the Indian supermarket, as I figured that they are nothing but Ka Prao/Holy Basil not long ago!

The plants are doing very well and yield good leaves which allowed me to make my favorite Kra Pao dish several times already.

I had made Ka Prao using minced Chicken, Turkey and Pork, all turned out very nice and tasty. I may even try fish soon if the plants able to give me another batch of harvest before winter!

Ka Prao 在泰语里是一种叫圣罗勒的香叶,它也是印度人喜爱的一种保健植物,它印度名字叫做Tulsi或Tulasi。它是一种唇形科罗勒属植物,紫色或绿色的叶子带有浓郁的香气,枝干和叶子带点毛,味道比更广为人知的九层塔/金不换稍微辛辣但更清香。

泰国以外的地区因为不容易找到圣罗勒叶,所以几乎所有的泰国餐厅都用了九层塔代替圣罗勒来做这道菜,味道当然也是不错的,不过和真正的泰式打抛肉还是有点差距,而且应该也不能叫做Ka Prao了,因为用的不是Ka Prao叶啊!


今年的夏天因为雨水蛮足的而且气温一直保持在八,九十度左右,所以我的两棵圣罗勒都长得非常好,让我能做好几次的鸡肉,猪肉和火鸡肉Ka Prao。我还有点贪心的希望入冬以前我可以再收成做一次鱼肉Ka Prao呢!

300 gm of minced meat ( I used ground pork this time)
4-5 cloves of garlic
4-5 red or green Thai Chilies (Adjust the quantity for the level of heat you like)
2 cups of Holy basil/Tulsi leaves

For seasoning:
2 tsp Fish sauce / nam pla
1 tsp of light soy sauce
1 tsp Sweet soy sauce

300 gm 肉末 (这次用了猪肉末)
4-5 瓣 蒜瓣
4-5 只红或绿的朝天椒 (可根据喜好增减)
2 cup 圣罗勒叶 Tulsi/Holy Basil

2 tsp 鱼露/Fish sauce / nam pla
1 tsp 酱油/生抽/light soy sauce
1 tsp 甜酱油/Sweet soy sauce

This is how Thai Holy Basil/Tulsi looks

1. Peeled garlic and remove stem from Thai chilies, pound both in a mortar and pestle until it is well crushed.

Note: You can also minced the garlic and chilies on a chopping board, many swear by the difference in taste by pounding the ingredients, which I had come to appreciate very recently.

2. Heat up 2-3 tbsp of oil in a wok/cooking pan, cook the pounded Chilies and garlic until fragrant.

3. Add the ground meat and keep stirring to break the meat as much as possible. Season with fish sauce, soy sauce and sweet soy sauce. Continue cooking for few more minutes until the meat is fully cooked.

4. Add holy basil leaves before turning the stove off, stir until the meat and leaves are well mixed and leaves started wilting.

1. 剥蒜瓣,和朝天椒一起摆在一个石捣臼里捣成泥。


2. 在一口锅里热上2-3 tbsp 的食油, 把蒜泥炒香。加入肉末,炒散。加入调味料继续煮至肉末变熟。

3. 加入圣罗勒叶,炒至断生即可熄火。

Serve well with fried egg and steamed rice

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