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Lamb & Asparagus with Basil
While lamb is not a typical Thai ingredient in most areas it is more common in the north of Thailand in the mountains where it is cooler. It is important to use a good quality lean lamb such as tenderloin for this dish, and do not overcook the lamb. The flavours meld together for a lovely spring dish of asparagus and lamb. I especially love using the purple asparagus both for colour and sweet flavour.
1 lb. boneless thinly sliced lamb cut into 2” X 1” strips
1/2# young asparagus cut into 2” diagonal pieces
4-6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
6-8 shallots, thinly sliced
2-3 Tbs. peanut oil for stir-frying
1-2 Tbs. fish sauce (nam pla), to taste
1 - 2 cups fresh Thai holy basil (bai ka-prow), or a combination of
sweet basil (bai horapa ) and Thai holy basil (bai ka-prow
2 small kaffir lime leaves (bai ma-gkrood), very finely slivered
5-10 Thai chiles (prik khee nu), minced
Generous Dash of ground white pepper
Prepare the ingredients as indicated. Leave the fresh basil leaves
Whole or if quite large cut into thirds; the flowers may also be used.
Heat a wok until the surface is smoking hot. Swirl in the oil to
coat the wok surface. Wait a few seconds for the oil to heat, then
stir in the asparagus followed a few seconds later with shallots.
Stir another few seconds before adding the lamb. Add the minced or sliced garlic. Stir-fry a minute or two, or until most of the lamb has started to change color on the outside. Toss in the chiles, slivered kaffirlime leaves. Sprinkle fish sauce sauce over the mixture and stir-fry another 15-20 seconds.
Then add fresh basil leaves and. Stir and mix well. Stir-fry another half a minute, or until the basil is wilted. Sprinkle with white pepper. Toss and transfer to a serving dish, or spoon directly over individual plates of plain steamed rice.
Notes and Pointers:
This is a good and easy stir-fried dish and one of the favorites
among Thai people. It is served over Thai Jasmine steamed rice as a
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