Cooking With Ian – Khay Jiao

October 1, 2020
2 mins read

So many recipes start with a story. But this doesn’t, but I’ll write one after. This is a Thai-style omelette, as I prefer to cook it. However, I will explicate as we go.


2-3 Eggs, whisked with fork or…whisk.

2 tsp white pepper.

Dash of Asian fish sauce (a dash is at least 1 tsp but is to taste. You may substitute a double-dash of Worcestershire sauce if you don’t keep fish sauce from the Far East in your pantry. If you don’t have Worcestershire sauce, I can’t help you. Fish sauce is way better than Worcestershire even though it stinks in its uncooked form. However, if you use Colatura di Alici/garum/liquamen cooking this recipe, you’re overdoing it.)

1 small shallot, sliced (or 1/4 cup red or white onion, diced or thinly sliced. don’t use sweet onions–the warmth matters.)

1 tbsp minced garlic (double up on garlic if you use onion instead of shallot)

3 tbsp Thai Dragon peppers diced. Thai Dragons aren’t easy to find outside of asian supermarkets, so any other hot pepper will do EXCEPT Habanero or Jalapeno because they impart weird additional flavors. You want a sweet heat from your peppers. Sriracha sauce may be used as a condiment ex-post-facto instead. You may omit this entirely if your heat tolerance sucks.

Sufficient oil to coat your cooking surface, and then some. I make this in one of those 9″ As Seen On TV green-coated cooking pans that was gifted to me. I don’t measure oil as a matter of course. You want to coat your pan, then have a bit extra to slosh around–you’re not deep frying your Khay Jiao but you’re damn well frying it. Sesame oil preferred, followed by lard. Peanut oil might work, never tried it. Vegetable oil isn’t great but will do in a pinch. Butter isn’t recommended–which I rarely don’t recommend. If you use canola oil, don’t read my blog (also–Repent Boomer!) 


Heat oil to just beneath the smoke point–it depends on which oil you use and how much. I don’t teach the basics of cooking, I’m a “I Know It When I See It” cook. This is probably why I’m a better baker than cook, but rarely bake since I don’t do much with carbs these days. 

Whisk eggs with white pepper and fish sauce. Stir in diced shallot, garlic, peppers. Put this combination into the oil. Cook until there is very little uncooked egg on top–you may wish to slosh your uncooked egg to the sides of the pan to expedite this process. Using two spatulas, flip this amalgamation. You might fail to flip it entirely. That’s okay, just make do. Finish until the reverse side is golden brown. Salt to taste (make sure to taste before salting–fish sauces are saltier than liberal tears.) 

Serve with:

It is a hearty meal in itself if you’re low-carb. Otherwise this will serve 2-3 if served with steamed rice or fried rice if you aren’t low-carb. Or eat both if you’re a glutton. 

The story:

One night I was drunkenly surfing the interwebs and ran across the base recipe but failed to bookmark the blog. See, I hated eating eggs except for scrambled, and was looking for other ways to eat them that I could tolerate. That was also back before I got sick and could no longer drunkenly surf the interwebs and must do so sober. I happened to have Thai Dragon peppers and an onion because I was making hot sauce (yes–I’ll share the first version of that recipe soon. Later versions are better but I mustn’t share all my secrets!) Anyhow, I found some blog with this recipe and it was cool and I tried it and loved it. Then over the years I perfected it into this amazing thing. It’s good and good for you. You can add cheese or other ingredients to taste, but that’s on you. Try it my way first.

If you enjoy my content, consider picking up some merch from my store.

Ian McLeod is an author and entrepreneur from the humid depths of Dixie. His books include the pop-satire DARWINVERSE series, and three books of poetry--BILGE PUMP OF A TURGID MIND, VALVE COVER GASKET OF THE ENGINE OF DESPAIR, and LAUNCH EVERYTHING; LET GOD SORT IT OUT

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