Pad Kra Pao, aka Thai Pork Basil Rice

I didn’t use to like Basil, and hence a general dislike for this dish. But with age, your tastebuds change and you start to enjoy things you didn’t when you were younger.

I had a craving for Thai Pork Basil Rice yesterday. I love ordering this in Singapore and whenever we visited Thailand. We headed to the most authentic Thai restaurant we that was just across the river from our home for lunch yesterday but the craving was not entirely satisfied there. I wanted more of it. I’m not entirely sure if it’s part of those pregnancy cravings or not, but I just had to cook it again today.

I set the timer for the rice and when I got up, rice was done. All was left was frying the pork basil, which honestly, did not take more than 10 minutes to prepare.

Recipe adapted from woksoflife.


  • 2 tablespoons oil (I used garlic lard oil I prepared the night before)
  • 2 shallots, or 1 onion thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 Thai bird de-seeded (if desired) and thinly sliced
  • 400g ground pork
  • 2 tablespoon red wine (or 1 teaspoon sugar + 2 tablespoons of water)
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons oyster sauce
  • 1 small slice of ginger, diced (usually omitted but I decided to add it in today for some extra fragrance)
  • two stalks of basil leaves, or if you manage to get hold of it, basil stir fry sauce which was what I brought back from Malaysia


1. In a wok on medium high heat, add your oil and heat them with the onions and garlic. Sauté until fragrant.
2. Once the onions are soft and slightly caramelised, add in the chopped chili and ginger and fry for another minute.
3. Crank up the heat to high, and add the ground pork, breaking it up into small bits.
4. Add your sauces together with the red wine/sugar and water and let it simmer. The liquid should cook off rather quickly.
5. Add the basil, and stir-fry until wilted. In my case, I added my basil paste here and let it fry for a little bit more.
6. Serve over a rice, topped with an over-medium fried egg, garnished with some coriander/cilantro.

If you’re lucky, you’ll have enough meat for a second round. Definitely enough to curb your Thai Basil Pork Rice craving. Enjoy.

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