Pad Kee Mao (Spicy Ground Chicken and Rice Noodles) Recipe
A tangle of rice noodles wraps up juicy ground chicken, tender pieces of egg, and sweet bell peppers. Add an Asian-inspired sauce and fiery jalapeños, and you have a quick, easy take on a popular Thai dish that’s great for a weeknight dinner.
What to buy: Wide rice noodles, oyster sauce, and fish sauce can be found at Asian markets and in the Asian foods section of the supermarket.
Thai basil is a variety of basil that has purple stems and releases a slightly peppery flavor when cooked. It can be found in Asian markets. If you can’t find it, go ahead and substitute regular basil.
- 1 (14-ounce) package wide rice noodles
- 1/4 cup oyster sauce
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 2 limes)
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 medium shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
- 3 medium garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 2 medium red or green bell peppers, thinly sliced
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 medium jalapeño peppers, thinly sliced
- 1 cup loosely packed Thai basil leaves
- Place noodles in a large bowl and cover with boiling water. Soak for about 15 minutes, until loose and pliable but not soft; drain and set aside. Meanwhile, combine oyster sauce, fish sauce, and lime juice in a medium nonreactive bowl, mix well, and set aside.
- Heat oil in a large (12-inch) frying pan over medium-high heat. Once heated, add shallots and garlic and cook for 2 minutes or until softened but not brown. Add ground chicken and break into small pieces. Cook until chicken is white and almost cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add bell peppers and stir-fry just until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
- Push chicken mixture to one side of the pan and add eggs to the center. Scramble with a spatula until eggs are set and don’t run, about 1 minute. Push eggs to the side and add reserved sauce mixture. Once the sauce is boiling, add the drained noodles and toss to coat. Remove from heat, add jalapeños and basil, and toss to combine; serve immediately.
Beverage pairing: Hacker-Pschorr Weisse, Germany. This dish is known as “drunken noodles,” though it’s not clear if that means it’s a good snack to have while drinking or good hangover food. Maybe both. In either case, it’s often fairly spicy, so you don’t want to drink anything too alcoholic with it, which is why a zesty, citrusy wheat beer from Germany is a good choice to soothe the lovely burn.