Friday, March 6, 2009

Chinese (American) Comfort Food

Here's a good comfort food recipe for classic "Fried Rice", a good way to use up yesterday's rice as today's side or main dish. I am using Jasmine but any long-grain variety will work. I know some of you out there still use "parboiled" but I encourage you to experiment with different varieties (just avoid high-starch rice like arborio, sushi, sticky, Spanish short-grains, etc.) This dish truly works better with at least day old rice as it has started to dry a bit, using fresh cooked rice will result in a sticky dish. Here's what you will need:

2 cups Rice, pre-cooked
1 tsp. Ginger, minced
1 tsp. Garlic, minced
1/2 Red Bell Pepper, diced
1 cup Mushrooms, thinly sliced (I like Shitake or Mitake but any variety will do)
1/2 cup Peas, Frozen
1 Scallion, thinly sliced
1/8 cup Peanut Oil
1/8 cup Sesame Oil
2 Tbsp. Soy Sauce
1 1/2 tsp. Fish Sauce (Optional)
Fresh Hot Chiles (Optional)
2 Eggs, beaten

Combine Sesame Oil, Soy Sauce and Fish Sauce in a small bowl. In a wide saucepan (preferably non-stick) or well-seasoned wok heat 1/2 the Peanut Oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add beaten egg and quickly stir fry until done, remove from pan. Add the remaining Peanut Oil, Ginger, Garlic and Hot Chile (if using) and stir fry for 1 minute. Add Red Bell Pepper and Mushrooms and continue cooking for an additional two minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring constantly to separate grains, for an another couple of minutes. Add scallion and peas and stir to combine. Pour in sauce and cooked egg and continue cooking until everything is hot. Season with additional soy sauce.

*Remember the idea of "stir-frying" is to cook everything very quickly in a very hot pan to achieve a level of doneness that cooks everything but maintains the integrity of the ingredients. The Chinese call this "Wok Hay".


  1. Looks yummy! Even I might could make this. What are you doing cooking on your birthday?

  2. Dinner problem solved! Although I think the chickens already got last night's rice...

    Happy Birthday, btw.

  3. I was showing Tony your blog and he said "why doesn't Joel publish a cook book"?

    You don't necessarily have to be famous or "well known" to do that, do you? I know I'd buy one. :)

  4. This looks wonderful!Can't wait to try it.
    We have a special request, could you give us recipe for a great sushi roll? Just give us your favorite.
    P.S. We hope you had a great birthday yesterday!