The first thing I ever learnt how to cook was fried rice. You can add in any leftover vegetables, meat..mix that in with day-old rice and you have a completely delicious, meal ready for a crowd. It IS that simple and THAT great! This is one of the first dishes I learnt from my dad. I remember being in the first semester college feeling completely homesick for Chinese Food. I had been living off of school cafeteria food for about a month and felt like I was going to die. It was then I realized how spoilt I had been with all those years! All that good-old home cooking was now long gone. So I quickly called home asked for this recipe and needless to say loved it. It was one of the best meals I have had. I continued to make this dish throughout my 18 month mission whenever I needed good Chinese Food. Now, I can pretty much say I have made it over 30 times and it is still one of my favorite meals!
I guarantee that you can an expert at chinese fried rice if you follow a few simple rules:
- Always use overnight rice. Cook rice the night before and leave it in the fridge. This is the only way you can get the right texture. I gave this tip to a brazilian lady I met on my mission and the next time she saw me she was so happy because she finally made good authentic fried rice.
- Your wok has to be steaming hot when you cook the rice or the meat. That is key!
- Chinese fried Rice is distinct from other types of fried rice you need to use a heck of a lot of FRESH ginger, garlic, scallions, onions. These are the key ingredients in fried rice. You can’t pretty much omit anything else and still get a delicious bowl of fried rice just with these aromatics. Please don’t skimp on these!
We hosted a couple friends over for dinner at our college apartment. And gosh we had a blast together just getting caught up over good Chinese food and Korean Dubboki (Spicy Rice Cakes). Good food, good company and it set the tone for a great weekend.
We packed some of the leftovers in lunch boxes for our two friends to take home. One of the girls told us that her mum loved it so much they tried to remake it that weekend! I just love this dish so much because it is meal that is so fast and easy and brings warmth to the soul! (You can even make it earlier and reheat it or leave it in the rice cooker to keep warm – it is so versatile!)
Adapted from Woksoflife
Ingredients – Serves 6-8
- 2 chicken breast, cut into small chunks
- 3 tsp homemade yakitori sauce/gluten free kikkoman soy sauce
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 1/2 can of Corn Kernels
- 2-3 small carrots, peeled and diced
- 2-3 scallions, finely chopped
- 4 slices of ginger, silvered (0.5″ cube)
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 3 eggs
- 6 cups of cooked rice (2 uncooked, refrigerated overnight)
- 6 tbsp homemade yakitori sauce/gluten free kikkoman soy sauce **(see note)
- 3/4 tbsp Salt
- Black Pepper
- 1 tsp Sesame Oil
How to Make:
- Cook your rice according to the package in a pan or a rice cooker. Leave the rice overnight in the fridge OR for 4-6 hours at least.
- Prepare your ingredients. Marinate the chicken in the yakitori sauce and cornstarch.
- Add 1 tbsp of water into a bowl with the carrots. Microwave on high for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Alternatively you could boil water and quickly blanch the carrots for a couple of minutes till just cooked through.
- Heat your nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Makes sure it is very hot. Add in the chicken and make sure all sides are no longer pink before scooping out. Don’t overcook your chicken, make sure it is just barely cooked.
- Warm up another skillet alongside the one with the that you stir fried your chicken in.
- When sizzling hot, in both skillets – do the same thing – add in 1 tsp of sesame oil. Throw in the garlic, scallions and ginger. Fry till aromatic and brown (1-2 minutes). ***
- Add in your rice. If the rice is still cold and in clumps use a fork to gently loosen the rice.
- Stir and cook till rice is aromatic and warmed through.
- Make a well in your rice and add in the 3 eggs. As soon as the egg whites starts setting mix in the egg. Make sure the rice is coated in the egg mixture.
- Put in your carrots, corn and chicken. Mix throughly till incorporated.
- Season to taste with salt and yakitori/soy sauce.
- Serve with more spring onions!
**Each brand and type of soy sauce differs in taste and saltiness. Japanese Kikoman Soy Sauce is more on the sweet side in comparison to Chinese light soy sauce which is traditionally used. Adjust according to taste and preference.
***Since there was 2 of us we were able to do one each. But repeat the process twice. It is better to fry it in small batches to keep the flavours in control. We didn’t have a huge frying pan that could hold all the rice and we didn’t have a wok either. To make a better stir-fry it is safer to use smaller frying pans and divide into small portions to make sure you can mix it well enough without spilling the food!