Chicken with Roasted Chilli Paste and Basil

November 20, 2015 Posted by

Roasted Chilli and Basil Chicken

There is a new Pan-Asian restaurant in town called Tim Tai. We ate one really good chicken dish there which had the distinct flavor of basil and red chillies. It was so good that I wondered why haven’t I tasted this dish before? I wanted to try this dish immediately and searched online for the recipe. This is a Thai dish and consists of a roasted red chilli paste which is the soul of this dish. I made a large batch of this paste and have stored it in the freezer. Otherwise, this dish is a simple stir fry and very easy to make once you have the paste ready.

I have tried this same dish with vegetables too and it was equally good.

Here is the recipe for this full-of-flavor dish.



For the roasted chilli paste

1/2 cup dried chillies

1/2 cup onion

1/4 cup garlic cloves

3 tbsp palm or brown sugar

3 tbsp vegetable oil

2 tbsp tamarind

1 tbsp soya sauce


For the stir fry

5-6 cloves of garlic

250 gms of boneless chicken

1 tsp soya sauce

1 onion

1/2 yellow bell pepper

1/2 red bell pepper

Basil leaves




For the chilli paste

  1. Unpeel the onions and cut into cubes. Peel the garlic cloves.
  2. In a pan dry roast the chillies until they darken and become brittle. I used dried bydagi chillies but once can also use fresh red chillies. This should take about 5 mins. Remove from pan and let it cool.
  3. Now dry fry the shallots and garlic until they are softened and slightly charred
  4. Now combine the chillies, shallots, garlic and tamarind and grind to a coarse paste. Add some oil and grind to a smooth paste.
  5. Now take 1 tbsp oil in a pan and add the chilli paste and fry it, stirring occasionally, until the paste darkens in colour.  This should take around 5 mins.
  6. Remove from the heat and when cooled add palm sugar (I managed with brown sugar), soya sauce and salt and combine well.
  7. The paste is ready. You can transfer this to a jar and freeze it in the refrigerator for future use.

For the Stir fry

  1. Cut the chicken into thin long slices. Slice the peppers and unpeel and cut the onion into cube and separate the florets.
  2. Take a pan and heat 1 tbsp oil. When hot, add chopped garlic and saute till light brown.
  3. Add the chicken, 3 tbsp roasted chilli paste, 1 tsp soya sauce and saute it on high heat till chicken is almost cooked.
  4. Add the onions, bell peppers and cook till the vegetables are cooked yet firm. Don’t let them overcook.
  5. Taste and add salt, sugar or chilli paste according to your preference
  6. Add lots of chopped basil leaves according to your taste and serve.

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