Fried rice needs no introduction. Ubiquitous across Asia, it bonds our Asian communities together like no other. The ingredients and recipes are highly localized, and the variations across Asia are as numerous as the cultures. Below is just one take on how I make it at home, relying on a little numbing to enhance the other flavors.
Ingredients (serving 2-3)
- 1 cup of jasmine or brown rice
- 4-5 sticks of celery
- 1 cup of frozen sweetcorn
- 1 cup of frozen green peas
- 1 small onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, diced
- 1-2 inches of ginger, diced
- 2 scallions, with whites cut into small chunks, the green stems thinly sliced, and separate them
- 1/2 tsp dried red Sichuan peppers, crushed
- 1 tbsp Lao Gan Ma, or other chili crisp, or chili oil
- 1 tbsp light soy sauce
- 1/3 cup of cooking oil
- Green Sichuan pepper oil, to finish
- First, make the rice as you normally would but with slightly less water, because fried rice is better when with fluffy grains that are not sticking. In Asia, leftover rice from the night before is routinely used for fried rice.
- Bring the sweetcorn and peas to room temperature
- When rice is ready, heat up your well seasoned wok or a large non stick saucepan, put in the oil and bring it to a medium heat.
- Add the mix of garlic, ginger, scallion whites, onions, dried Sichuan pepper, and Lao Gan Ma. Stir gently and the aroma will immediately permeate your kitchen. Use low to medium heat because we don't want the aromatics to burn.
- Turn the heat to high and add celery, sweetcorn and peas, and add soy sauce, stir and mix well for 1 to 2 mins.
- Add the rice, stir quickly and mix well with the other ingredients for 2 mins.
- Serve immediately, sprinkled with the sliced green scallions and drizzle with 50Hertz green Sichuan pepper oil. Savor the aroma! Add a fried egg on top if you like.
Tips: This recipe is very forgiving in that you can substitute any ingredients with others to your liking. This version is vegetarian but you can add meat if you like. If you do, add before the rice and cook thoroughly.