Monday, March 7, 2011
Pork fried rice: Not a paper project
I only haven't been photographing or writing about the experience. Shame on me. I know. But it's exhausting sometimes, don't you think?
Today however I promised myself to take you on my journey of leftover cooking Asian style!
OK, so a couple of tips to begin: The vegetables in this recipe should be fresh, aside from the frozen peas, but can include whatever earthy bits you prefer. Cauliflower, broccoli, artichoke hearts or corn or whatever you have sitting in the fridge will be fine.
For the rice or pork, it's definitely about the leftovers. Do not use cooked-the-same-day rice or pork: It'll be too moist (unless you prefer sort of mushy, gooey fried rice ... as some people do ... in that case ... go wild with the same day stuff).
Don't be afraid either to go with a meat-less fried rice. I don't know about skipping the eggs for a nearly vegan dish, but we've made this with leftover pork, chicken and beef or no meat at all: Yum every time (OK, except the time I overdid the oyster sauce ... couldn't spit that out fast enough).
For the cooking pan I can recommend that you use either a very large stainless steel, high-sided skillet (often referred to as a chicken fryer) or a 12-inch cast iron skillet.
If you've never used these before, they'll require some patience. But, read the care instructions, stick with them (was that a pun?), and you'll soon begin to talk about your cast iron pans in the same gasping way that some women talk about Orlando Bloom.
... Orlando ... Bloom ...
Whew. Sorry. Lost track of things for a minute there ... back to, where was I?
Ah, yes, the cast iron. Get one or if you have one, use it.
Alright. Honestly I'm finished! Enjoy this recipe, if you're so inclined, and let me know if you have any improvements to suggest!
Pork fried rice
3 Tbsp hoison sauce
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 tsp Chinese style all spice
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
2 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
4 to 6 eggs (as preferred by chef)
1 plus cups each of diced carrot, onion, mushroom, frozen peas and day-old, cooked pork
4 cups day-old rice (white or brown)
Salt to taste
With your pan on medium, saute each of your vegetables individually on a light coat of olive oil (once you've made fried rice a few times you'll be able to guesstimate when to add the next bit so that everything cooks evenly ... until then cook everything individually).
Saute the pre-cooked meat just long enough that it is heated through, remove from pan.
Again beginning with a very light coat of olive oil, pour your lightly stirred eggs into the pan (I use six eggs because we like a very eggy fried rice; but four is sufficient to ensure the eggs blend nicely into the dish). Allow eggs to cook for two to three minutes and then, using the edge of a spatula, pull the cooked edges away from the sides of the pan.
Uncooked egg should spill onto the pan surface: If it does not, tilt the pan to force them onto the cooking surface. Allow to cook for another minute or two. Turn the eggs with a spatula and remove when cooked through, or slightly runny.
Finally, add another light coat of olive oil as well as the rice, mustard, all spice and oyster, Worcestershire, hoison and low-sodium soy sauces. Continue stirring together these ingredients until the rice is coated.
Lower heat to medium low, place vegetables and eggs on top of rice, stir until mixed, salt to taste and serve after all ingredients are nicely coated and reheated.