An abundance of whole basil leaves joins chicken and fiery red chiles for a quick, delicious, and decidedly spicy stir-fry. Holy basil is the most authentic choice, but any variety will do. (From Food and Wine.)
- 1 1⁄3 lbs chicken breasts, boneless and skinless, cut into 1-by-2-inch pieces (about 4)
- 2 tablespoons asian fish sauce (nam pla or nuoc mam, available at Asian markets and many supermarkets)
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 1 large onion, cut into thin slices
- 3 fresh chili peppers, seeds and ribs removed, cut into thin slices or 1⁄4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1⁄2 cups lightly packed basil leaves
- In a medium bowl, combine the chicken with the fish sauce, soy sauce, water, and sugar.
- In a large nonstick frying pan or a wok, heat the oil over moderately high heat.
- Add the onion and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
- Stir in the chiles and garlic; cook, stirring, 30 seconds longer.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade with a slotted spoon and add it to the hot pan.
- Cook until almost done, stirring, about 3 minutes.
- Add the marinade and cook 30 seconds longer.
- Remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup of the basil.
- Serve topped with the remaining 1/2 cup basil.