Monday, 6 October 2014

Chicken Fried Rice

This is my favourite way to use up leftover can also use leftover chicken, but I like to use fresh chicken breasts and marinade them.

Make the marinade by combining:

1 tablespoon honey
4 tablespoons hoisin sauce
3 tablespoons water
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 green onion, minced
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Place 2 chicken breasts into the marinade, turning to make sure they are well covered and leave for about an hour.

In a hot pan drizzle about 1 tablespoon of olive oil and cook the chicken breasts, turning often, until cooked through. Save the marinade.

When they are well browned on both sides I like to turn the heat down and put a lid onto the pan. This intensifies the heat and also creates steam, which helps prevent the chicken from drying out too much.

Remove and set aside. Save the pan.

Dice the chicken.

Take 1 cup of peas out of the freezer.

Whisk 4 eggs really well.

Heat your wok (or frying pan) and add a bit of vegetable oil, then add the egg. Cook, stirring occasionally, until you have  a cross between an omelette and scrambled eggs.

Remove and set aside..

In a hot wok, with a drizzle of olive oil, cook:

3 green onions, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ginger, grated

Cook for a couple of minutes, until the garlic and ginger are fragrant. Stir often, to avoid burning.

Add the cooked rice. I had about 7 cups.

Cook, stirring frequently until the rice is warm.

Add the diced chicken to the wok, and continue cooking and stirring to heat that through.

At this point the rice will be hot.

Add the defrosted peas to the wok, stir to combine.
The trick here is to heat them through without over cooking them.

Lastly add the cooked egg, roughly chopping it as you add it.

Add the reserved marinade to the pan that the chicken was cooked in, along with a bit of water and quickly bring to a boil, scraping the bits off the bottom of the pan. Add this sauce to the wok, stir well to combine.

  • I like to allow at least 2 cups of rice per portion. I use basmati rice; any cooked rice will work.
  • Cold rice works better than hot for this type of recipe, as it sticks less. I try and plan ahead, either cooking the rice the day before, or cooking extra when I make rice for a different meal.
  • If you have leftover chicken, dice that up and add an Asian style vinaigrette to the rice, or make a quick sauce with soya, brown sugar, garlic and ginger.
  • We like to serve this with sweet chili sauce and soy sauce.
  • Pork tenderloin makes a good substitute for chicken. Marinade it and then cook it in the pan, in the oven or on the grill. I like to make the fried rice without the meat, and then slice the cooked pork thinly and lay it on top.
  • If you like seafood, use scallops, prawns or shrimp. Cut the marinating time in half. As they all cook quickly, they can be added to the wok and quickly cooked before the rice is added. Remove the seafood and set aside while you proceed, then add them back at the end to reheat.
  • Add more vegetables and omit the meat to turn this into a vegetarian fried rice. Try peppers, mushrooms, bean sprouts, thinly sliced cabbage and snow peas.
  • The egg can be added, uncooked, to the rice, and cooked at the same time. You have smaller pieces of egg this way; we prefer the bigger pieces of egg. The choice is personal. Just make sure that the egg is fully cooked before you serve the rice.

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