Cookbook author and television host Adam Liaw shares a recipe for chicken kra-pow, a stir-fry of chicken and the aromatic herb holy basil that's seen widely in Thai cooking.

Liaw demonstrated this dish at Masterclass supported by Sanpellegrino during the 2019 Melbourne Food & Wine Festival.

Serves 4


3 cloves garlic
2 long red chillies, seeds removed
500g chicken thigh fillets
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp fish sauce
½ tsp caster sugar
4 eggs
1½ cups (loosely packed) torn holy basil leaves (substitute Thai basil or Italian basil)
Lime wedges, to serve


Roughly chop the garlic and chillies together on a board. With a heavy knife or cleaver, roughly mince the chicken. It doesn’t need to be perfectly even.

Heat a wok over medium-high heat and add the oil. Add the garlic and chilli and fry until fragrant (about 1 minute), then add the chicken on top of the garlic and chilli. Flip the contents of the wok (like you would a pancake) so the chicken is in direct contact with the wok and the chilli mixture is on top. Fry undisturbed until the chicken is browned (about 2 minutes), then add the fish sauce and sugar and begin to stir. Stir-fry for a minute or two until the chicken is cooked through.

Meanwhile, fry the eggs sunny-side up to your liking.

Stir the basil into the chicken mixture. Divide among 4 plates, top each with an egg and serve with lime wedges and (if desired) steamed rice.

Steamed rice

Serves 4

2 cups Koshihikari rice (sold as sushi rice)

Place the rice in a heavy-based saucepan, cover with plenty of cold water and stir with your hand. Carefully pour off the cloudy water and repeat until the water is mostly clear. Add clean water until it’s about 2cm above the rice.

Place over high heat and cook until the water evaporates to the level of the top of the rice and holes appear on the surface from steam escaping (about 5 minutes). Cover with a tight-fitting lid, reduce heat to very low and leave for 12 minutes. Turn off the heat and, without uncovering, leave for a further 5 minutes. Fluff up the rice with a rice paddle or fork and leave uncovered for 2 minutes before serving.