Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fried Rice

Homemade fried rice is a great answer to leftover rice (either from cooking too much or a Friday night Chinese food binge), and it's cheap, easy, and filling. I usually use a pork chop and egg as my protein, but you can just as easily substitute chicken, beef, or tofu for the pork.

Start with your meat or tofu. Cut it into fairly small bite size pieces. A fairly simple marinade will add a lot of flavour to your rice at relatively little expense, assuming you have everything on hand. If you're missing one or two things, leave them out. The soy sauce and garlic are all that is really necessary.

Use about 2 teaspoons of each of the ingredients, except the ginger, garlic, and dried chilis - cut it back to about 1 teaspoon each. I use jarred minced garlic because it's easier and really doesn't cost any more than fresh garlic, but you can use a clove of chopped garlic if you'd like.  Mix all the ingredients in a small bowl, toss the meat or tofu to coat, and let sit in the fridge for 30 minutes to 4 hours.

When you're ready to start cooking, gather your veggies and chop. This time I used white onion, celery, broccoli, frozen red peppers, and frozen peas and carrots. I've also used cabbage and mushrooms in the past when I've had them handy.

Heat a large pot or a wok on medium heat with a little bit of olive or canola oil. Lightly scramble your egg, and then set it aside. Scrambling the egg first ensures you'll have pieces of egg in your finished rice, instead of rice coated in cooked egg.

Next, cook your meat and veggies. Be careful not to overcook the veggies or your rice will be mushy.

When the veggies and meat/tofu are cooked to your liking, dump in the rice. Leftover rice works best for this, because it's not as wet as fresh rice, but if you're really craving fried rice you can use freshly cooked rice.

Madly stir the rice around so it soaks up any of the lingering meat marinade and starts to brown. At this point, add about a tablespoon of soy sauce and a little bit of rice vinegar if you have it handy.

When the rice is hot, add the egg and continue to cook only until everything is hot. If you overcook the egg will be rubbery.

Dinner's ready! The recipe below will make 4-5 servings of rice. Feel free to use whatever veggies and proteins you have on hand.


  • 1 egg
  • 1 pork chop, chicken breast or thigh, slab of extra-firm tofu, or beef
  • Meat/tofu marinade:
    • 2 tsp. soy sauce
    • 2 tsp. hoisin sauce
    • 2 tsp. seasoned rice vinegar
    • 2 tsp. sesame oil
    • 1 tsp. minced garlic or 1 garlic clove, finely minced
    • 1 tsp. dried chilis
    • 1 tsp. ground ginger or grated fresh ginger
    • pepper to taste
  • Veggies 
    • A combined 3-4 cups of:
      • carrots
      • onions
      • celery
      • cabbage
      • mushrooms
      • red or green peppers
      • broccoli
      • or anything else you have on hand that would taste good! 
  • 2 cups of cooked rice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons seasoned rice vinegar
- Cut meat/tofu into bite-size pieces
- Mix marinade ingredients and toss meat/tofu to coat. Let sit in fridge for 30 minutes - 4 hours
- Chop veggies into bite-size pieces
- Heat 1/2 tablespoon olive or canola oil over medium heat in a large pot. Lightly scramble egg, then set aside.
- In same pot, cook meat/tofu and veggies just until meat is cooked and veggies are slightly softened
- Add rice, soy sauce, and rice vinegar. Stir to combine.
- When rice is hot, add egg. Don't overcook!


1 comment:

  1. Consider buying Mirin next time you're in the ethnic aisle in superstore... very yummy addition to marinades! Good call on the hoisin tho!