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'Red Light' Fried Morning Glory

Monday, 26 May 2008


The vegetable sold as "morning glory" in stores like Silom is sometimes called "water spinach"—the leaves are slightly bitter, but taste absolutely perfect with a handful of burning red Thai chiles. The exact quantity of each ingredient in this dish is somewhat variable; I like to use approximately the proportions given here, but Sanamluang’s version is a little more salty and less spicy. I’m not sure where the name comes from, but perhaps the red chiles have something to do with it.


At a glance
Cooking Method
Heat Level
Side Dish
  • 1/2 to 1 pound morning glory (found in Asian markets)

  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 4 to 8 bright red Thai chiles, chopped finely

  • 1 teaspoon fermented whole soybean sauce

  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce

  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce

  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)


Rinse the morning glory and trim the thick stems. Leave water clinging to the leaves. Heat the oil in a wok over high flame until it begins to smoke. Add garlic and chiles and cook for just a second, then add the morning glory and Thai chiles. Add the fermented soybean sauce and keep the ingredients moving over the highest heat possible for two to three minutes more. Add the oyster sauce, fish sauce and sugar, and cook for another few seconds.

Serve with fresh white rice.


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