Thai Chicken with Basil and Cashews

I started buying a CSA box this year. I really like getting a variety of veggies, but it can be a struggle to figure out what to do with them, particularly when the farm has a bumper crop of the same vegetable each week. I did a good job of eating everything in the early spring, but when work got busy in June, I basically decided I didn’t want to cook any more. I’m sure you noticed the slowing down of recipe posts over the past few months, and it wasn’t just fun bread and dessert recipes that I neglected. I neglected dinner, too.

I found a recipe for Thai Chicken with Basil and Cashews when I finally got around to reading a previous issue of Eating Well. I was excited because I had everything to make it. It would help me use up the scallions and squash I’d stashed in the fridge but forgotten about, and would let me use some of the fresh basil that I keep feeling guilty about not using.

I generally enjoy Eating Well recipes, but I always double the sauce recipe since they never include enough sauce with their stir fries. The original recipe called for fish sauce, which I really don’t like the smell of. I refuse to keep it in the house, but I always substitute soy sauce with great, although perhaps not identical, results.

thaichickenbasilcashew

Thai Chicken with Basil and Cashews
 
Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 pound boneless chicken, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 scallions, cut into 1-inch segments
  • red chiles or crushed red pepper, to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 medium zucchini or summer squash, quartered and cut into ½ inch pieces
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 4 tsp lime juice
  • 4 tsp molasses
  • 4 tsp cornstarch
  • ½ cup toasted cashews
  • ¼ cup slivered basil
Instructions
  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and saute for 4-5 minutes, until cooked through. Transfer to a plate.
  2. Heat remaining 1 tbsp oil. Saute scallions and chiles for 30 seconds; add squash and garlic and saute for 3 minutes, until squash is tender.
  3. Meanwhile, stir together soy sauce, lime juice, molasses, and cornstarch. Add sauce and chicken (with any juices) to the pan; cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, stirring constantly, until sauce thickens. Remove from heat and add toasted cashews and basil. Serve over rice.

 

This recipe cooked very quickly, so it is definitely important to have all of your cutting prep done in advance. The stirfry was very tasty. It was not too spicy with the amount of chile flakes that I sprinkled in, but it could easily be made spicier if desired. Everything in this dish was delicious. The flavorful sauce went well on rice. It cooked quickly and is thick, not runny. You’ll have to stir the stirfry into your rice if you want to really mix it in. If you want the sauce to be thinner, try adding a tiny bit of extra water to the pan.

In general, I’m not very good at remaking stirfries that I’ve blogged about on here, but I might make an exception for this one.

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