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Wok-Fried Chicken and Vegetables with Ginger and Lemongrass

Serves: Makes 4 servings


  • ⅓ cup fish sauce
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice, plus more to taste
  • ¼ cup firmly packed palm sugar or light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup very finely minced lemongrass, white parts only
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and sliced into thin strips
  • ½ teaspoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons Thai wok or peanut oil, divided
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cored and cut into matchsticks
  • 8 shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and sliced
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced ginger
  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • 1 to 2 Thai bird chiles, or to taste, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch green onions, ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch long pieces
  • ½ cup loosely packed Thai basil leaves, torn


The pungent flavors of Thailand come to life in this simple yet flavorful dish. The chicken is marinated in a lemongrass sauce which also does double-duty as a sauce for the stir-fried vegetables. Lemongrass is very fibrous and adds great texture to this stir-fry, just make sure it is very finely minced.

To make marinade and stir-fry sauce: Place fish sauce, lime juice, palm sugar, and lemongrass in a small mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Pour half of the marinade into a large sealable bag and add chicken. Marinate for 30 minutes. Pour remaining marinade into a small mixing bowl and whisk in corn starch. Set aside.

Remove chicken from plastic bag and discard marinade. Place the chicken in a bowl, setting it—along with the rest of the stir-fry ingredients and an extra, clean medium bowl—next to the stovetop.

Heat a wok over high heat and swirl in 1 tablespoon oil to coat. Add red pepper and mushrooms and stir-fry until tender, about 2 minutes. Add ginger, garlic, chiles and green onions and cook until aromatic, 1 minute. Transfer vegetables from the wok to a medium bowl and return wok to high heat.

Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil and swirl to coat. When oil is just beginning to smoke, add chicken and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add reserved lemongrass sauce, toss well to coat, and cook 1 to 2 minutes to reduce sauce. Return vegetables to wok, tossing to coat thoroughly. Once chicken has cooked through completely, remove wok from heat, add basil and toss once more.

To serve: transfer to a warmed serving platter and serve immediately.

Recipe developed for Sur La Table’s Cooking Classes

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