Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fried Rice - with chicken and veggies

Fried rice is something that the Witch craves like nothing else. For years she tried to make it at home and had little success. Ok, no success. Turns out there are a few tricks to making successful fried rice at home, and lucky for you the Kitchen Witch is here to share those secrets.

First secret: You DO need cold cooked rice. And this does NOT mean minute rice. I've tried many many times to use minute rice and the results are dismal. Having a rice cooker helps immensely as well, if you're rice cooking challenged like the Witch is. I got my rice cooker - its a small 3 cup one - for $10 at Walgreens. It works great, too!

Second secret: Have all your ingredients ready to go so you can just cook, not prep & then cook. Stir frying goes fast. From start to finish we're looking at 5 minutes of cooking time, max. Having all your veggies, eggs and meat ready to go will only assist you in the cooking process. Don't ignore this secret!

Third secret: Cook in batches. Don't try to cook the veggies, then cook the eggs and then add the rice. You will end up with a nasty, ugly mess of egg covered veggies and slimy rice. Been there, done that. Cook the veg first, remove it. Cook the eggs, remove them. Cook the rice then add everything else back to the pan, stir it all together and that's that!

Fried rice isn't that hard once you learn the techniques. Experiment with the veggies and flavors that you like the most. Its a great way to use up left overs and recreate them into a whole new, yummy and different dish. Enjoy!

Fried Rice
makes 4 generous servings
3 cups cold cooked white rice (basmati is nice)
3-4 T oil
4 green onions sliced thin, including 1/3 of the green part (reserve 1T for garnish)
1 carrot diced fine
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 red or green bell pepper, diced fine
1 stalk celery sliced thin
4 eggs, whipped for scrambled eggs
3-4 T soy sauce
1 chicken breast, cooked and diced
1 handful of frozen peas

*~*Kitchen Witch Tip: Prep all your ingredients and have them ready to go. This is very important when making fried rice or stir fries because they move quick and you won't have time to slice & dice while the 1st step is cooking. Take the time to gather your mies en place (a French term meaning everything in its place, as in set up before cooking) and you'll have a far greater success.~*~

Heat a wok or large cast iron skillet over high heat. Once its screamin' hot, literally smoking, add 1 T of the oil and the veggies. Stir rapidly to ensure even cooking and avoid burning. Cook the veggies for 1-2 minutes or until they start to brown and wilt. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add a touch more oil to the hot pan. Add the whipped eggs. Scramble eggs and remove from pan once they've just set up. You will be adding these back to the rice so a little underdone now is fine, they'll cook longer later in the process.

Add the remaining oil to the hot pan. Add the cold rice and press it down into the pan to maximize surface contact. Let it cook undisturbed for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Using a spatula stir fry the rice, scraping up any cooked on bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook rice until its nicely fried and has color on most of the grains. Add the soy sauce, chicken, veggies and 3/4 of the scrambled eggs. Stir well to incorporate all ingredients. Cook for 1-2 minutes or until everything is warmed through.

Transfer cooked fried rice to a serving bowl and top with remaining eggs and reserved green onions. If desired drizzle with soy sauce before serving.

Nutrition Facts
provided by SparkPeople recipe calculator
Amount Per Serving
Calories 413.6
Total Fat 16.4 g
Saturated Fat 2.5 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4.0 g
Monounsaturated Fat 8.3 g
Cholesterol 246.7 mg
Sodium 1,033.2 mg
Potassium 632.5 mg
Total Carbohydrate 41.8 g
Dietary Fiber 1.7 g
Sugars 2.8 g
Protein 24.9 g


StephenC said...

Indeed, fried rice is a perfect vehicle for those little containers of leftovers we all have. I haven't had the greatest success with it myself, but will take your suggestions to heart for next time. Thanks.

Design Wine and Dine said...

I love fried rice too! This is a great post with great techniques! Sounds like all you need to make this rice is a little patience and a dream! I would like some right now!

Jenn said...

I am a huge fried rice fan also, but I have only made it for myself once. It turned out decent, but not as good looking as yours, that is for sure! I'm going to have to give this a shot, you make it sound so easy :)

Ananda Rajashekar said...

they looks comfortable and scrumptious ...can i have some :)

Scuttleboose said...

These are really great tips! Maybe this will cure my ache for Chinese take-out one day :) Thanks!

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