This recipe can be used with chicken, pork or fish, what makes this dish distinctive is the special rice that is used and the accompanying "dipping sauce." This meal has very simple ingredients and is relatively easy to prepare. It is enjoyed both in Laos and Thailand. The dipping sauce is very spicy, but this can be adjusted to personal preferences. Although it is commonly referred to as "sticky rice", it is more properly known and sold as "sweet rice". Please note that other varieties of rice cannot be substituted for sweet rice, they just won't work at all. Our directions call for the use of a Thai sticky rice steamer and a steaming basket. You can purchase an inexpensive steamer "kit" at the Thuan Phat Supermarket. It is possible to make sticky rice with a standard American vegetable steamer basket. We have tried both methods and although the Thai steamer works best, the other method works well too. Please note, for best results the rice should be soaked in water for 6-8 hours (or longer) before you start cooking it.
- 2 cups Thai long-grain sweet rice
- 4 White meat Chicken fillets (pork firm fish fillets can be used as well
- 2 tablespoons of grapeseed, peanut or canola cooking oil
- Garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste
- 1-10 Thai green chilies
- 1 tablespoons of a fresh lime juice
- 2 tablespoons of Nam Pla (น้ำปลา) (Thai Fish Sauce or "Nam Pa" in Laos)
Prepare the rice . . .
- Rinse the rice in water several times.
- Soak the rice in water for 6-8 hours or overnight
- Fill the steaming vessel will a few inches of water (water level must be below the steaming basket)
- Drain the soaked rice and fill steaming basket with the drained rice
- Cover the rice with a pot lid and then bring the water to a boil
- Turn the heat down to medium, a gentle boil will do (the steam's the important part)
About 12-15 minutes after the rice starts to steam you will need to "roll" the rice.
- Carefully remove the steaming basket from the steamer being careful not to burn yourself. Firmly grasping the edges of the steaming basket flip the rice over with a motion that is similar to flipping an egg or a pancake in a pan. This takes practice!!!! But don't worry, even if you can't get just right, the rice will still be delicious. Please note that if you are doing this in some other sort of steamer (like a folding metal vegetable steamer), the only discernible difference will be how compacted the rice is, the difference is only slight.The rice should be fully cooked in 20 - 25 minutes.
Cook the Chicken . . .
- In America it works just fine to use pan fried Chicken Breasts. If the breasts are too thick, carefully slice them in half.
- Season to taste the chicken breasts fillets with garlic powder salt and pepper and fry both sides on medium heat. Both side should be a nice golden-brown.
Tolerance to chilies varies greatly from person to person, you should adjust the number of chilies to the tastes of your guests. Use 1 to 10 chilies.
- Grind chilies in a mortar and pestle (Laotian style) or slice very thin (Thai style). Removing the seeds will lessen the heat a bit. It is a good idea to use rubber gloves, and whatever you do don't touch your eyes with your fingers!
- Add 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice to the ground chilies (about half a juicy lime)
- Add 2 tablespoons of the Nan Pla fish sauce.
- Serve the chicken and rice with your choice of vegetables. Authentically pieces of chicken are dipped in the sauce, but it works well if you drizzle sauce over your chicken.
Sticky Rice with Mangos:
Sticky rice with mango is a very popular and delicious dessert. It can be made with the rice left over from the recipe above. It's very easy to make. Sweeten (to taste) coconut milk with sugar and then pour the mixture over a mound of sticky rice. Top with slices of fresh mango. If you like mangos, try to find a mango slicer as slicing mangos is a bit challenging and the slicer makes it simple.
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