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Evil Princess Chicken


pamjsa
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On a recent trip back to my hometown of Boise, Idaho (of all places), I had lunch at an excellent Thai restaurant downtown and enjoyed a bento box that included a dish called Evil Princess Chicken. It was unbelievably good. I'd like to try to replicate this dish at home, but I've been unable to find a recipe by that name via Google. I've found recipes for Evil Jungle Princess--from what I can tell by looking at the recipes, though, these aren't exactly the same dish. (Or maybe they are, and the version I had was slightly different?)

Recipes? Suggestions for places to look? I am in serious need of the Evil Princess.

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Can you give a little more detail about the dish? It's not one that I usually see at Thai restaurants, so maybe that is a name particular to the restaurant you dined in. A search for "evil princess" and Thai on google shows up a lot of cocktail recipes, featuring rum, orange, jack fruit, pineapple, coconut, were any of these flavors in the dish? Another result showed up as a spicy red curry, is that more on track?

Michelle Pham

I like pie.

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In addition to chunks of chicken in a coconut milk/curry sauce, the dish included peanuts, carrots and long green beans. A very odd combination, but so so so good. It did not include mint, mushrooms, cabbage or yogurt cheese, which appeared in some of the recipes I found online.

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You probably won't find an exact recipe with those ingredients, but perhaps a good way to start is to experiment with some curries. Try a massaman curry paste and cook a curry with it using peanuts and the other ingredients listed. If that doesn't seem to be on the right track then try a red curry. Deep fry or dry fry the green beans before adding them to the dish.

Michelle Pham

I like pie.

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The book Keo's Thai Cuisine has recipes for Evil Jungle Prince Chicken and a Meatless version. I don't know if this book is still in print.

The recipe doesn't use the traditional curry paste but is made with red chile peppers, lemon grass, Kaffir lime leaves. coconut milk, salt, fish sauce, and fresh basil leaves.

The vegetable in the chicken version is cabbage but Thai's seem to be very creative cooks and change things about so long beans would work.

Edited by BarbaraY (log)
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The book Keo's Thai Cuisine has recipes for Evil Jungle Prince Chicken and a Meatless version. I don't know if this book is still in print.

The recipe doesn't use the traditional curry paste but is made with red chile peppers, lemon grass, Kaffir lime leaves. coconut milk, salt, fish sauce, and fresh basil leaves.

The vegetable in the chicken version is cabbage but Thai's seem to be very creative cooks and change things about so long beans would work.

Just checked, the book's available on Amazon, both new and used. HTH!

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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It wouldn't hurt to write a letter to the restaurant, would it? Since you don't live in town and aren't a (Thai) restaurateur, perhaps if you just explain that you loved the dish they made and would like to re-create it for yourself at home, they would give you the recipe. Then share it with us. :wink:

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'Evil Prince' is a fairly well known Thai dish. I think Evil Princess is just someone taking liberties with the name. It comes in both a meat (usually chicken) and veggie version. BarbaraY has the ingredients right, below. fodgycakes, I would not recommend a mussaman curry paste for Evil Prince; the taste would be very different.

Start w/ 2-6 prik kee noo chilies, 1/2 stalk lemongrass, 2 kaffir lime leaves, mortered or blended to a paste. Saute the paste with a bit of oil 1-2 min. Add a little coconut milk - this should not be a very soupy dish, more like a thick sauce at the end - then add about 4oz sliced chicken and cook it in the milk. Finish with about 12 Thai basil leaves and fish sauce to taste. Serve over finely shredded cabbage.

Veggie version is similar, just add the veggies (hardest first - so in your case carrots first, then later the yard-long beans) instead of the chicken and omit the fish sauce (and in your case, finish with peanuts).

Other veggies to try include asparagus, bell peppers, bamboo shoots, cucumbers, eggplants, baby corn, mushrooms, tomatoes, water chestnuts or zucchini. The cabbage in this dish is usually used uncooked as a base, not an ingredient. Carrots are unusual, but why not? As with any similar dish, cut the harder veggies smaller to reduce cooking time.

This maybe should be in the 'Elsewhere in Asia' forum? That's where most Thai cooking questions end up.

Hong Kong Dave

O que nao mata engorda.

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'Evil Prince' is a fairly well known Thai dish. I think Evil Princess is just someone taking liberties with the name. It comes in both a meat (usually chicken) and veggie version. BarbaraY has the ingredients right, below. fodgycakes, I would not recommend a mussaman curry paste for Evil Prince; the taste would be very different.

Start w/ 2-6 prik kee noo chilies, 1/2 stalk lemongrass, 2 kaffir lime leaves, mortered or blended to a paste. Saute the paste with a bit of oil 1-2 min. Add a little coconut milk - this should not be a very soupy dish, more like a thick sauce at the end - then add about 4oz sliced chicken and cook it in the milk. Finish with about 12 Thai basil leaves and fish sauce to taste. Serve over finely shredded cabbage.

Veggie version is similar, just add the veggies (hardest first - so in your case carrots first, then later the yard-long beans) instead of the chicken and omit the fish sauce (and in your case, finish with peanuts).

Other veggies to try include asparagus, bell peppers, bamboo shoots, cucumbers, eggplants, baby corn, mushrooms, tomatoes, water chestnuts or zucchini. The cabbage in this dish is usually used uncooked as a base, not an ingredient. Carrots are unusual, but why not? As with any similar dish, cut the harder veggies smaller to reduce cooking time.

This maybe should be in the 'Elsewhere in Asia' forum? That's where most Thai cooking questions end up.

Thanks so much, HKDave--this provides me with an excellent starting place. I was beginning to suspect that Evil Princess was the restaurant's cute version of Evil Prince, recipes for which seem to be pretty widely available on the Internet.

I've also come to the conclusion that the sauce is probably more important than the specific vegetable combination. This was not a soupy dish at all, but the distinctive flavors (coconut and curry) were definitely in the sauce.

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i myself was just wondering if anyone was going to address the interesting naming of the dish--is it some folk etymology, perhaps?

I don't think so. The name originated at Mekong restaurant in Honolulu, where Keo Sananikone created the dish in the late 1970s. He later opened a small chain of restaurants bearing the Keo's name, and became one of Hawaii's first "celebrity" chefs.

The "evil" part of the name is because of the chile peppers -- which were more a novelty in the 1970s than they are now. I don't remember what the "jungle" specifically referred to, but it's one of the "exotic" herbs -- either lemongrass or Thai basil. And the "prince" part of the name was because the dish is so good that it's fit for royalty. As far as I can trace, all other "Evil Jungle" recipes are take-offs on Keo's creation.

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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