Here, finally, is the actual recipe for how I make fried rice. I never really had a recipe so my instructions in a previous post were rather vague, but I wrote it down the other day.
Fried rice is the ultimate leftover dish, using leftover rice, and while you mainly use fresh vegetables and raw meat (or tofu, or all veggies), you can use any leftover meat you have, stir-frying it to heat it up. My favorite part of fried rice is probably the eggs, which you scramble in the pan and break up in a dish before adding to the final mix.
Before the recipe, I found a really easy way to julienne vegetables similarly shaped to carrots on a Gwyneth Paltrow cooking video, of all places. I used to dice the carrots until I decided that they added more to the dish if the pieces were larger, and when you julienne them the matchsticks remain thin and cook quickly while being larger and also easier to eat.
Start by thinly slicing the carrot on the bias.
Stack a few of the pieces together, then thinly slice the carrot, lengthwise, into matchsticks. It'll take a bit of practice before they really are thin, but it's fun to do.
And there you go. Perfect in salads, too. To see the video with the pro instructions (Gwyneth is with a chef), visit the video.
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Basic Fried Rice Recipe
The sky's the limit with fried rice; mix and match ingredients, omitting those you don't, replacing them with ones you do, or use up any vegetables that would work to clean the fridge out.
2-3 chicken breasts, cubed into 1/2-inch pieces
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3/4 teaspoon oyster sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and diced
1 bunch green onions, sliced on the bias
1 medium onion, chopped
1 carrot, julienned
2 eggs, beaten
4-5 cups day old rice, preferably white rice, though I've had good results using jasmine brown rice
2-3 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon rice vinegar
3/4 teaspoon sesame oil
Chili sauce to taste
Salt and white pepper, mixed together in a small container
- Mix the chicken with 1 tablespoon soy sauce, oyster sauce, cornstarch, and white pepper. Set aside while you assemble the remaining ingredients.
- Next to the stove, place a large bowl. Place the garlic and ginger in a small bowl, and all the other ingredients, from vegetables to rice in their own bowl; all the ingredients, once stir-fried, will be placed into the large bowl before being put back in the wok with the rice. Whisk the remaining soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, and chili sauce together in another small bowl.
- The method goes like this: Pour a few drops of oil (don't be heavy-handed with the oil as you are trying to avoid greasy rice) into the heated wok or skillet, add an ingredients and sprinkle with some salt and pepper (again, lightly; you can check for seasoning at the end). Stir-fry, stirring constantly, on high heat until just beginning to wilt and the vegetables have brown marks. Remove from pan and place in the large bowl. Repeat.
- Heat a wok or a large skillet on high. Starting with the garlic and ginger, stir-fry for thirty seconds or until fragrant; remove from pan. Stir-fry the greed onions next, then the onions, followed by the carrots.
- After adding more oil, pour the beaten eggs into the wok and mix constantly until you get softly-scrambled eggs -- large curds, but not dry. Place on the side of the large bowl and have someone smush them with a fork.
- Stir-fry the chicken until all the pieces lose the raw look, about 3-5 minutes. Remove to bowl.
- Finally, add the rice to the wok, following the oil-seasoning method stated above. Stir-fry until the rice begins to look charred, then dump in all the ingredients in the large bowl and any accumulated juices. Mix thoroughly. Turn off heat. Add the sauce ingredients and mix thoroughly. The Rice will no longer look white, but almost like brown rice. Add more soy sauce if needed. Check for seasonings.
- Serve immediately, placing on a heated platter if not serving directly on plates.