When we first discovered this dish we had no idea what it was. We had ventured out into the village surrounding our school and sat outside the home of a charismatic woman who's English vocabulary started and ended with, "Hello!!" Attempting to order, Kyle went with what someone else was having by pointing at their dish while Meg got her usual, pad thai (it was easy enough to say). Kyle got his dish and it was spicy and flavorful, unlike any of the dishes we had enjoyed at that point. We couldn't put our finger on what it was, though. Kyle continued to order the same dish until we learned to say, "nee arri mai?" which means, "what is this?" After asking the teachers what "pad king gai" meant we found out it was ginger chicken! If you're a ginger fan, get ready. This is a delicious dish!
Cost & Ingredients
Total Cost: $20 (If you don't have any of the ingredients)
Serving Size: 4 servings (2 Meg & Kyle servings)
Ingredients (Main Dish):
- 1 1/2 cups jasmine rice
- 1/2 cup ginger root (not the sushi kind)
- 1 red bell pepper (or whichever color you like)
- 3 green onions cut into small pieces
- Salt and pepper
- Cilantro - I am not including how much because Meg likes 10x what the recipe calls for. So...to taste
- Fish sauce (not Kyle's favorite)
- Oyster sauce
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast
- Vegetable oil
- Mushrooms (if you like them)
- Thai red chile paste (we use Sriracha)
- 2 tablespoons of chicken broth
Step 1 - Get the dog out of the kitchen
Henry, our roommate's dog, is absolutely adorable and we love him. The only problem is that he LOVES to play fetch. He will bring his tennis ball and put it right under your foot. Since we are dealing with sharp knives, make sure you create a safe working environment!
Step 2 - Prepare rice, and keep it warm.
We will admit it, rice is hard to cook. Now that rice has become a staple in our diet, we have purchased to a rice cooker. If you do not have a rice cooker we highly suggest getting the instant rice that comes in little bags with holes it in...they're for the less talented cooks (Meg), but if you're good at cooking rice, go for the old fashion method!
Step 3a - Prepare the chicken
Carefully cut the chicken into thin slices as pictured below.
Step 3b - Prepare garlic, ginger and other ingredients
It's time to mince the garlic! You can buy the garlic already minced if you'd like. The chicken and garlic will go into the pan at the same time and shortly after you will add the ginger. It's best to get everything lined up ready to go (as seen on TV in cooking shows) so you can seamlessly add them to your pan and feel like a pro. Because when we feel like a professional cook...our food tastes like a professional cook made it...right?
Anyway, you will want to peel and cut your ginger into small pieces about the size of a match stick.
Step 5 - Add ingredients to pan and impress everyone in your house with how good it smells!
Add fish sauce, oyster sauce, sugar, ginger, red pepper and onion. Continue to stir and cook until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender. Mix the chili paste with the chicken broth and add to the dish.
Step 4 - Garnish and serve!
Get a large scoop of rice, dish the chicken and sprinkle some cilantro on top and you've got Pad King Gai. Enjoy!