Cleaning out the fridge to make space for fresh stuff is a dreaded task in my books. I avoid it at all costs, but then again, if there’s fried rice at the end of the rainbow its not so bad.
This post is a loose recipe as what you have in your fridge is likely different from what I have in mine.
But I wanted to outline some essential basics when it comes to making the perfect friend rice every time.
The common assumption with fried rice is that you want to use really high heat. This isn’t the case. If we do this, everything turns into a sticky sad mess. Cleaning burnt rice from our pans is something to avoid at all costs. Instead, starting with a generous amount of oil or fat and going slow and steady will win the race.
Rice is a sponge so we want to make sure there’s plenty of tasty yummies for it to soak up before adding it to the mix. The basic flavour base that I like to use is a hearty amount of flavourful fat, some chopped bacon and sausage or coconut oil, an onion finely chopped, 3-4 garlic cloves finely chopped, an inch piece of ginger, finely chopped,carrots,celery and some sort of hot pepper. For this version I had a chipotle, very non traditional but still utterly delicious. You could try adding other things too, green onions, cumin seeds, masala, lemongrass…To deglaze the pan I like to use rice wine vinegar, infused vinegar or tamari but water works in a pinch. Just a few Tbs and then we can add the rice.
3. Rice to Vegetable ratio
Make a big pot of jasmine rice. For the best rice, cook it in chicken or vegetable stock with plenty of sea salt, this small step makes for big flavour. The amount of rice will be at your discretion, don’t put too much or it’ll be bland. Next is the addition of leafy fast cooking vegetables like swiss chard and kale, added last minute they cook a bit but still maintain their vibrance.
There are two types of people- those who mix the egg into the rice and those who like a fried egg on top of their rice. I happen to be of the latter category, but J is a mixer. For mixing the egg with the rice I crack however many (usually one per person) into a bowl and whip it with a bit of oil. On medium-low heat pour the egg over the rice, tilt the pan around and cover for a few minutes. This just give the egg a chance to get nice and golden crispy on the bottom of the pan without sticking. After a few minutes, mix it all around, sometimes I like to add some raw cheddar (I know, I’m such a traditionalist) cover again and let it get even more crispy.
The fun part of fried rice are the extra goodies, we love to eat it with some fermented homemade sauerkraut or kimchi. Toasting some seeds or nuts for a topping is a great textural addition. Sesame seeds, a drizzle of hoisin, sunshine sauce , miso, toasted seaweed, fresh mango…endless possibilities.
There you have it, the perfect clean out the fridge fried rice, different every single time but always delicious. Take your time, I know it’s supposed to be a fast meal but slowing down just a bit makes it extra good and filled with crispy crackly bits of egg, rice, flavour and good veggies!