Pad Kra Pao (Thai Minced Beef with Basil) and Kai Dao (Thai-Style Fried Egg)

Still in a Thai mood, so today I made Pad Kra Pao (Thai Minced Beef with Basil) with Kai Dao (Thai-Style Fried Egg) .

I made it together with a Tom Yum Soup — that will be presented in a separate post.

You can make Pad Kra Pao with any minced meat. I’m not really a fan of minced chicken, so i used minced beef.

As a vegan alternative, consider using diced tofu

You can also consider adding some vegetables to the dish such as sliced capsicums or chopped long beans.

The key ingredient is Thai Basil (aka Holy Basil, although I think it looks more like Holly leaves).

This is not quite the same as the regular basil you use in Italian cooking, that has thick and large leaves. The leaves on Thai Basil are more pointy and the flavour is 5x stronger.

In Tesco here in Malaysia, the regular basil is sold as … err “Basil” or “Sweet Basil” but to get Thai Basil you have to look for “Daun Selasih” (thanks to my sister for this tip!):

Here’s a comparison between Regular or Sweet Basil, and Thai Basil:

Here are all the ingredients:

  • 200g of minced beef
  • a few peces of monkey chillies (cili api/cili padi)
  • 1 large red chilli
  • a few cloves of garlic

For the stir-fry sauce you want:

  • 1 tbsp of oyster sauce (I used mushroom-based vegetarian oyster sauce)
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tsp fish sauce (Nam Pla)
  • 1.5 tsp sweet soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1.5 tsp sugar

Chop the monkey chillies, garlic and red chilli into small pieces, and pound them.

(I thought I could get away without chopping the garlic but I think it’s better to do so)

For ease of wok management, I start with the Kai Dao. This needs just one ingredient, an egg.

Make sure the wok is well seasoned (I poured in about 1 tbsp of oil and wiped it around the entire surface, and then heated up the wok). A well seasoned wok and high-temperature will ensure the egg doesn’t stick.

Add in enough oil to cover an egg. A round bottomed wok is good for this as you use less oil.

A proper Kai Dao should have golden brown edges, and the yolk should be soft (or better still runny).

The egg goes well with Prik Nam Pla, a simple condiment of monkey chillies, fish sauce, garlic and lime.

Now for the Pad Kra Pao.

We don’t need as much oil in the wok, so I removed some. We didn’t add any other ingredients besides egg when doing the Kai Dao so keep the excess oil for tomorrow’s cooking. Also let the oil in the wok cool to about 180C.

Add in the pounded ingredients and stir fry. When the garlic starts to brown, add in the minced beef. Mix up the beef with the oil, and then pour in the sauce. Once the beef is cooked, turn off the heat and add in the basil. Stir until basil is wilted.

Oh and make sure you have enough cooking gas before you start! 😎

And there you have it, Pad Kra Pao and Kai Dao served with white rice.

Look out for my upcoming Tom Yam post.

Originally posted on Facebook at

You may also like...