Fried rice is perfect for busy weeknights, or when you're looking for a creative way to serve leftovers. Out of ham? Cooked chicken or turkey can be used in its place. Actually, most any meat or ingredient can serve as the star of the dish.
Fried rice is usually made by taking already cooked rice and stir-frying it in a wok or frying pan with eggs, vegetables, seafood, or meat of any kind. It can be eaten as a main dish or as an accompaniment. This type of rice is popular in Asian culture.
You can find a variety of Asian-inspired fried rice dishes made similarly in the Americas as well. In Spanish-speaking countries, you may hear it called arroz frito, which means "fried rice," or arroz Chino, which is "Chinese rice." Ecuador, Peru, and Puerto Rico have other special names for it like chaulafan, chaufa, or arroz mamposteado.
- 2 eggs
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/2 onion
- 8 ounces cooked ham
- 1 green onion, washed
- 6 tablespoons oil for frying, or as needed
- 1/2 cup peas, fresh, canned, or frozen
- 4 cups cold cooked rice
- Lightly beat the eggs. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon each of the oyster sauce and soy sauce. Add a bit of salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- Peel and dice the onion. Dice the ham and green onion.
- Heat a wok or frying pan on medium-high to high heat. When the oil is hot, add 2 tablespoons oil. Add the eggs. Scramble lightly and remove from the pan. Clean out the pan.
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil in the pan or wok. When the oil is hot, add the onion. Stir-fry briefly, then add the ham and the green peas. Stir-fry and remove from the pan. Clean out the pan.
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil in the wok. Reduce the heat to medium and add the rice, stirring with chopsticks to break up the clumps. Stir in the remainder of the soy sauce and oyster sauce. Season with salt and pepper if desired.
- Add the cooked meat and vegetables back into the pan. Stir in the scrambled egg. Heat through and stir in the green onion. Serve hot.
The beauty of fried rice is that it is quick, the recipe can easily accommodate substitutions, and it is inexpensive. You do not need pricey meats. You do not need meat at all. You can make a fried rice with mushrooms or eggs as the main ingredient.
Other ingredients you can use to dial up the flavor intensity can include garlic, chilies, parsley, coriander, toasted sesame seeds, seaweed flakes, tomato, lime, or pickled vegetables.
The cooking oil you use can also affect the flavor of the rice. The most neutral is vegetable oil. You may choose to use sesame oil to give the rice dish a nutty taste, or you can use lard to impart a velvety richness to the dish.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||6 g|
|Saturated Fat||2 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||2 g|
|Dietary Fiber||4 g|