Make Fabulous Fried Rice At Home

Hit up any Chinese or Indian buffet and you’ll notice that a fixture of the line is fried rice — the kind that you can pile on your plate time after time and still enjoy with each new helping. It’s both delicious and addictive.

So wouldn’t it be great if you could make that rice in your own kitchen and avoid shelling out $8 for an all-you-can-eat meal of regret?

Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Here’s the good news: you can, and it’s easy. In fact, if you ever have stray vegetables or leftovers lying around (like I do almost… oh, let’s see, EVERY DAY), it’s even easier. Fried rice is incredibly forgiving—you can toss whatever you want in there, and it will still taste great.

So here’s a basic recipe, but feel free to play around with it!

To serve two, you should have:

• Rice (about 2 cups cooked)

• Oil

• Meat or tofu (I like to use chicken)

• A little sweetness, like raisins, currants, orange rinds, or pineapple bits

• Veggies (most crucial are probably onions, and I also often use carrots, cabbage, broccoli, corn, peas, bell peppers…)

• Scrambled eggs (optional but delicious)

• Seasoning—If you’re going for Indian flavor, use chili powder, cumin, and garam masala. For Chinese style, use soy sauce, stir-fry sauce, and sesame oil. Garlic is good for both kinds, and so is ginger.

Get Cookin’:

First, stir-fry your veggies and your sweetness in a frying pan with a little bit of oil. I like to fry my veggies and meat/tofu together, but you can do them separately and then combine them later, as well. Stir-fry everything on medium heat until it’s tender and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes.

Your rice should be pre-cooked before you begin stir-frying the vegetables because, otherwise, it will be too moist. So, make it ahead of time if you can; if not, try to get it done at least 15-30 minutes in advance.

When your veggies and meat/tofu are done cooking, combine them if you haven’t already. Add your seasoning, lower the heat, and continue cooking them for a minute or two until you think the spices have infused their delicious flavors into the ingredients.

Finally, add the cooked rice to the pan, and stir everything together. Turn off the heat. Add more spices if necessary, serve, and enjoy!

[Image courtesy of maona.net.]

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