Fried Rice is a very popular chinese rice dish cooked with lot of vegetables and choice of meat (chicken, tofu, beef or prawns). One of the best memories of mine with connection to fried rice or I can say the love for fried rice started with the Chicken fried rice that Bindu Chechi (our family friend) made. It was so aromatic and mouth watering one. Seeing my new found love, my mom started to make it at home for celebrating the small special victories of mine (She knew exactly what can make me happy).
This recipe is mostly how my mom makes it, but I have started using a bit more different ingredients to enhance the beauty of this leftover rice (Yes, one big lesson my mom taught me is to use leftover rice or if the rice is freshly cooked, allow it to cool (even refrigerate it for a while once it is cold) in order to retain the shape and consistency of rice in fried rice and not to turn the fried rice into a mushy fried rice). So enjoy your fried rice. I have used chicken as the meat here, but you can use paneer, tofu or any other meat.
- Basmati rice – 2 cups (I select the long one – Brand used ‘India Gate’)
- Water – 4 cups
- Oil – 3 tsp (I used Olive oil)
- Egg – 2 (medium size)
- Pepper – 4 tsp
- Salt – to taste
- Ginger (optional) – 1 small piece (very finely chopped l)
- Garlic (optional)- 2 pods (very finely chopped )
- Chicken\paneer – 1 handful (chopped to cubes and cooked)
- Carrot – 1 handful (chopped into small cubes)
- Green Bell pepper (Capsicum) – ½ handful (small pieces a little bigger than the carrot pieces)
- Red Bell pepper (Capsicum) – ½ handful (small pieces a little bigger than the carrot pieces)
- Cabbage – 1 handful (finely chopped)
- Green Onions\ scallions – 1 small stalk (I have used the while bulbs as well as the green stalks chopped into small pieces)
- Celery – 1
- Soy sauce – 1tsp
- Sesame oil – 2tsp
- Rice Vinegar – few drops
- Tomato Ketchup – 1 tsp
- Green Chilli Sauce – 1 tsp
- Wash the rice and soak it in cold water for 10 minutes.
- Drain the water from the rice (if needed use a napkin to dry the water completely).
I am adding 2 different ways to cook the rice, I have tried both these ways and I would say Mom’s way is more for a veteran chef :). I am not so confident that I won’t be breaking the rice while stirring continuously, so I use the second method most of the time.
My Mom’s way :
- Heat a large pan and add 1 tsp of oil.
- Add rice into this and reduce the heat to low.
- Stir the rice continuously without breaking the rice for a minute.
- Keep water in another vessel (heavy bottom vessels are good) and bring the water to boil in high heat.
- Add the rice from Step 3 to this and reduce the flame to medium.
- Allow the rice to cook completely. Use a fork or kabab skewer’s to separate the rice grains if required. Make sure the rice grains are not sticking together.
1. Heat a large heavy bottom vessel on high heat.
- Bring the water in the vessel to boil. Add a tsp of oil into this.
- Add the rice to this and reduce the flame to medium.
- Allow the rice to cook completely.
(Adding the oil in the water makes sure that the rice is not sticking to each other)
Once the rice is cooked, make sure to use it only once it is not hot. (See notes for more details).
- Cut the chicken\Paneer to small cubes.
- Mix it with salt and pepper.
- Heat a small pan and add oil.
- Once the oil is hot, fry the chicken\paneer, until its cooked. I never do deep fry. Keep it aside.
- Heat Sesame\Olive oil in a large wok.
- Add finely chopped ginger and garlic into that and stir fry that. (Optional)
- Add the capsicum (red and green) and the white bulb of the green onion. Stir it for a minute.
- Add the carrots and celery to this.
- Add salt and pepper to this and mix well. Saute this for 1 minute.
- Add cabbage to this at the last when almost all other veges are cooked.
- Transfer this to a plate.
- Add the eggs into the same wok. Add salt and pepper to this and scarmble.
- When the scrambled eggs are cooked, transfer this to a plate.
- Add 1 tsp of sesame oil to the wok and add the rice (cooked and not hot) into this. Saute this in the oil well so that if there is any rice sticking to each other would be separated.
- Now add the cooked veges from Step 7 and scrambled eggs from Step 9. Also please add the fried chicken.
- Add rice vinegar and toss all the ingredients well for 20 secs (If you don’t have a large pan, mix the ingredients with a spatula gently.
- Add tomato ketchup and soya sauce and toss for another 20 secs.
- Add green chilli sauce and add the rest of the celery and spring onion (green & white). Toss it one final time for about 10 secs.
- Turn of the flame and garnish it with tomato/carrot flower and green stalk of spring onion.
- I have made fried rice with finely chopped ginger/garlic as well as with crushed fine ginger/garlic and found the chopped one is better. Crushed one tends to add more water to the mixture and is sticky. When using the chopped one, make sure to chop it to thin slice, else if you bite on that the taste of fried rice would be changed. Ginger/Garlic can be an optional ingredient.
- I usually cook the fried rice with left over rice (long, non sticky and non mushy). I have noted that for the best results, make the rice well in advance and always use rice which is cold (You can cook the rice fresh and refrigerate it for few hours to get the same result). Using the rice just cooked into this recipe can give you a mushy fried rice.
- A wok or round bottom utensil is best for fried rice preparation.
- Soya sauce added to the rice gives the dark color, so if in case you prefer the white color, please avoid using the Soya sauce.