Thursday, September 17, 2009

Fried Rice

Fried rice is my number one comfort food. I could probably eat it every day, and I don't care whether it's homemade, take-out or whatever, although I suppose I draw the line at frozen. It's also my favorite way to use up whatever is in my refrigerator. Over the years, I've had a number of people ask me for a fried rice recipe, and I've always had a hard time giving one because it's such a malleable dish. You can add or subtract just about anything. In fact, just the other day, I started typing up a recipe only to realize that I had added so many little footnotes that it was going to be impossible to follow. I think it'll be easier for me to just post different iterations as I happen to make them.

That being said, here's the version I made the other day. Fried rice was not an uncommon breakfast in our household when I was growing up, and that's why I almost always include ham and eggs in mine. Don't be tempted to use fresh rice - it'll get all sticky and gooey on you and turn into mush. Day-old rice is the key to good fried rice; in fact leftover take-out rice is perfect. Also, notice that there really is not a lot of soy sauce in this recipe. Fried rice does not have to be brown.


4 eggs, beaten

1 tbsp + 1 tsp vegetable, canola or olive oil

1/2 c. onion

1/2 c. sliced mushrooms

1 c. cubed turkey ham

1 tbsp soy sauce

4 c. rice (preferably, day old)

1/2 tsp garlic powder (optional)

1 tbsp sesame oil

1/2 c. frozen peas

Salt & pepper to taste


1. Heat a large pan or wok. Add 1 tsp. oil (or you can use cooking spray) and the beaten eggs, and cook as you would scrambled eggs. Try to leave the pieces big, as they will be broken up later when you add them back to the rice. Remove the cooked eggs from the pan and set aside. I usually just dump them back into the bowl I used to beat them.
I don't worry about contamination from the raw egg because it will get all cooked again.

2. Heat the oil in the same pan over high heat, and add the onions and mushrooms. Saute until onions turn translucent.

3. Add the cubed ham and heat through. Add the soy sauce and salt & pepper to taste.

4. Add the rice. I generally try and break up the rice as much as possible before adding it to the pan. You want the grains to be separated as much as possible.

5. Turn the heat down to medium. You want to heat the rice through, but you don't want it to burn. At this point, I usually add garlic powder and maybe more salt & pepper too.

6. Once the rice is hot, add the peas and stir them in. I throw them in still-frozen since they thaw & cook very quickly.

7. Add the sesame oil and toss thoroughly to coat everything. Sesame adds some nice aroma and helps the grains stay separated.

8. Last, but not least, add the eggs back in. Gently stir until they are hot through. Serve immediately.

1 comment:

  1. YAY!!! Thanks :) I need to go find some gluten free ham and try this out!