This stir-fry is probably one of the most popular and common dishes you’ll find in any ‘hole-in-the-wall’ eaterie across Thailand. Known as gai phat met mamuang himmaphan, this dish is also typically stir-fried without noodles and served with steamed jasmine rice, which is equally delicious.
200g boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced into tablespoon-sized pieces
2 eggs, cracked into a bowl
150g fresh egg noodles (or dried noodles blanched until soft and refreshed in cold water)
200ml chicken (or vegetable) stock
pinch of caster sugar
3 tbsp oyster sauce
3 tbsp toasted cashew nuts
1. In a bowl, mix 3 finely chopped garlic cloves (alternatively, these can be ground to a paste using a pestle and mortar), 2 thinly sliced red bird’s eye chillies, the chicken (or sweet potato – see tip), 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and the oyster sauce (or kecap manis – see tip). Massage together with your hands, ensuring all the chicken (or sweet potato) is covered.
2. Place a nonstick wok over a high heat and leave it to get really hot for a few minutes. Pour 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil into the wok – the intense heat should ensure it is smoking hot immediately. With a wok spoon (or wooden spoon) in one hand, add the eggs, then leave to cook for 20 seconds before scraping around the wok – this will create chunks of egg like an omelette.
3. Add the chicken (or sweet potato), garlic and chilli mixture and stir-fry for 2 minutes until all the chicken is sealed and the garlic is starting to turn golden brown. Add the noodles and stir-fry for a further minute, moving the noodles constantly to colour them without letting them stick to the wok. Next, add the stock, caster sugar, oyster sauce and cashews and stir-fry for a further minute to soften the nuts and ensure the chicken (or sweet potato) is cooked through.
4. Taste the juices with a teaspoon – they should be savoury and a little spicy with a touch of sweetness, so adjust if necessary. Serve in bowls with chopsticks.
TIP For a vegetarian version of this stir-fried chicken with cashews, use kecap manis or vegetarian oyster sauce and replace the chicken with peeled sweet potatoes, chopped into 2cm chunks, boiled until soft and then refreshed in cold water before stir-frying. Swap the chicken stock for vegetable stock.
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Our recipes are from Thai in 7 by Sebby Holmes, which is published by Hachette, price £17.99. To order a copy for £10.79 until 19 July go to whsmith.co.uk and enter the code YOUTHAI at the checkout. Book number: 9780857838346. For terms and conditions, see whsmith.co.uk/terms.