Total Time
Prep 20 mins
Cook 10 mins

I was taught this recipe by a Thai chef from the Royal Orchid restaurant on Portland Street, Manchester, England. I've tried dozens of recipes for this dish, and this is the best that I've ever been able to do it. Obviously, it's open to interpretation: if you want it a bit more salty, add a bit more nam pla; if you want it a little sweeter, add a touch more palm sugar; if it's not spicy enough, add more chilli to the paste. In addition, I'd always go for the full fat coconut milk - it gives a far better texture to the dish. I'm very much from the Gina D'Acampo school of thought on this one - don't try to make healthy options; just go to the gym. Also note that the veggies in this are interchangeable for several other things - interchange the aubergine and beans for any other types of green veg - sugarsnap peas, runner beans, peppers etc. Finally, I should also specify that the palm sugar should be dissolved in hot water before adding to the pot - this should be done entirely based upon taste, but as a starting point, I'd say that you should add a couple of tablespoons of sugar to 300ml of hot water.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Slice the galangal, green chilli and lemon grass very fine indeed. Then make it even finer. I can't stress enough that this really needs to be done very well. Don't worry about mixing them up together to chop, as they're all getting thrown in together anyway.
  2. Throw the finely sliced galangal, chilli and lemongrass into a pestle and mortar and mash to a fine paste.
  3. Heat the palm oil in a non-stick pan.
  4. Briefly fry the paste until sizzling.
  5. Immediately add the coconut milk and fry until sizzling.
  6. Immediately add the nam pla palm sugar and chicken powder and fry until sizzling.
  7. Immediately add the thinly sliced chicken breast and fry until browned.
  8. Add the aubergine and bamboo and continue to sizzle.
  9. Add the kaffir lime leaves and stir.
  10. Add some water if needed to thin the sauce out a little bit.
  11. Add the green beans and stir.
  12. Add the thai basil.
  13. Simmer for a minute and taste.
  14. Make any required additions of palm sugar and/or nam pla to taste.
  15. Serve immediately with rice of your choice.