will england :: food : How to Make Fried Rice (2)


From: Eric The Read
Subject: Re: How To Make Fried Rice. Correctly.

Piggybacking on Thorfy's somewhat Joycean fried rice "recipe", I hereby
present my own, 'coz it's easier. His is probably better, though I
differ on when certain ingredients are put in.


First off:

Any garlic and/or onion that you want goes in first. Always. They
flavour everything else while it's cooking, so you want 'em in a soon as
possible. If you're using any meat (I suggest bacon; if you slice it up
in about 1-inch pieces, it's about perfect) throw it in now. Remove the
meat when it's *almost* cooked.

Unlike Thorfy, I have no religious objections to fibrous veggies (^_^)--
you just have to cook 'em right, which is to say: as much as you like
'em cooked. I tend to follow the "crisp-tender" school of cooking
veggies, so I cook carrot slices (for instance) until they're *just*
able to bend a bit at the edges. Broccoli should crunch, but be warm
throughout. Ditto cauliflower.

Oh, and by the way: When using carrots in any sort of wok cooking, how
you slice them is essential. You want to cut the carrot at an angle,
so's to produce oval-shaped slices. This lets the carrot get a maximum
of surface area on the wok, which speeds its cooking.

Right. On with the fried rice.

So, you've got your day-old rice (Usually, I'm pressed for time, so I
make it with fresh rice I stuck in the freezer, but day-old rice really
is much better), your oil and your onion/garlic/root veggies in the wok
sizzlin' away. I always use an egg and green onions (a.k.a "spring
onions" in .au, apparently), so chop off the rooty bit of the onions
and-- this is important-- peel off the outer layer. It's almost
impossible to clean the fsckers properly, so just pull 'em off. Chop
them as Thorfy suggests.

Once you've got your root veggies (if any) cooked the way you want, toss
in the other veggies, and stir-fry for about a minute or so. Toss in the
meat again, and the rice, and about 1/4 cup or so of good soy sauce. You
may find various flavours of soy sauce in gourmet section of your
gross-ery story-- avoid them at all costs. They taste nasty with fried
rice.

Mix it all together, making sure to spread out the soy sauce as much as
possible. Push everything to the sides of the wok, and dump the
already-beaten egg and green onions in the centre. Make scrambled
eggs. :^)

Right before the eggs have hardened completely, stir them in to the mess
as a whole. Toss in any seasonings at this point. Make sure it's hot
all the way through, and serve that puppy.

Disclaimer: I can tell you right now, Thorfy really knows what he's
talking about. His recipe is probably way better than mine-- and I
intend to try his out at my first opportunity (which, the way work is
going right now, means Christmas, I think). But mine's a fairly good
one, and it has the advantages of being pretty quick 'n' dirty, if you
come home of an evening, and think, "Oh shit, I have nothing for
dinner... but here's a little left-over bacon, and I can whip up some
rice while I'm chopping the onion...."

Probably I should have renamed this to: "How To Make Fried Rice.
Good Enough."

Most cooking is about developing an intuition about what they mean when
they say, "steam vegetables until tender". And why they're adding the
soy sauce, and why they're doing it when they're doing it. My advice:
experiment. Do it all wrong at least once (but not while company's
around), and learn from your mistakes. I think it was Charles Mingus who
said, "Man, experiment all you want. But do it when you're woodshedding,
not on stage."

-=Eric

 

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