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“Kra Pao is the spicy kind of basil, as opposed to Thai basil. Look for a lighter green, somewhat crinkled leaf compared to Thai basil. You can use Thai basil if it's all you can get, and it will taste just fine, but will be less spicy. You can make this recipe using any kind of meat, or even just eggplant for a vegetarian version. Vary the amount of chili paste and chilies to control the heat. I often just leave out the chiles. Red or green chilies are both fine.”

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 tablespoon thai chili paste
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 lb pork, coarsely ground
  • 1 12 cups thai hot basil leaves, rinsed and drained
  • 12 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce
  • 3 Thai red chili peppers, seeded and cut into 1 inch pieces


  1. To a hot wok add the chili paste and hear until the chili paste is fragrant and tiny beads of oil appear on it. Add the oil.
  2. Put the ground pork into the wok and cook, mixing the chili paste into the meat as well as possible, breaking up the meat and stirring frequently.
  3. When the pork is about half done add the onions, chilies and garlic. Cook until onions are translucent and pork is fully cooked. Add the fish sauce.
  4. Add the kra pao leaves and continue heating and stirring until the leaves are wilted.

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