Sometimes there’s an easy recipe you keep on hand for when days get hectic. Having a sixth month old to care for and now to cook for, I am finally starting to really understand the meaning of the word! At any rate, this flavorful dish is a great way to use up leftover rice. If you don’t have Char Siu, visit my recipe to homemake some here
Perhaps you’d like to make a vegetarian version. In that case, leave out the pork fat and use butter in place of it on a 1:1 ratio.
What really makes this dish wonderful--aside from the bittersweet, spicy earthiness of garlic--is how adaptable it is. You can add any vegetable you like to it, for example. Or no vegetables, if that’s how you roll. Listed below are my recommended ingredients and for variety’s sake. If you want to get fancy and you have a can of water chestnuts or sliced bamboo shoots, they would also be tasty tossed in.
Garlic Fried Rice with Char Siu
2 cups cooked rice
5 scallions, sliced (white and pale green parts only)
1 carrot, julienned
2 stalks celery, julienned
1 ounce bean sprouts (optional)
1 slab char siu, (approx 1/4 inch thick), diced finely
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 eggs, beaten
1 Tablespoon neutral oil (such as safflower, vegetable, canola or peanut oil)
1 1/2 Tablespoons pork fat (rendered from the char siu)
Soy sauce, to taste
Pepper, to taste
1. In a wok or heavy bottomed saucepan over medium, heat 1 the oil. Beat the eggs for a minute or so to incorporate more air and then add them to the pan. Tilt pan as you would when forming a crepe to make a thin pancake of egg. Cook 2 -3 minutes, then flip. Cook until eggs are cooked through. Set aside to cool.
2. When eggs have cooled, sliced them into 1/4 inch strips.
3. In the pan over medium heat, add pork fat, then carrots, scallions, char siu and celery. Season with pepper. Cook 3 minutes, until vegetables are beginning to get tender.
4. Add garlic and bean sprouts and a dash of soy sauce and cook for an additional minute.
5. Add rice and more soy sauce, up to 1/2 teaspoon and more black pepper. Cook until rice is heated through.
6. Add egg and cook until egg had been heated, up to 1 minute.
Serve, garnished with additional scallions.