Ah, fried rice.
Fried rice (Com Chien) is the most beloved food of many Asian kids and a favorite comfort food of many adults. My very first attempt at making fried rice many moons ago was ... interesting to say the least. My teenage- self thought the word "fried" in fried rice meant that it had to be crispy. So being the bright-minded and good-looking girl that I was, I deep-fried the rice in a large pool of oil. I even squished the rice down with a spatula so that it could get even more crispy.
It wasn't until much later (sadly) that I realized I had it all wrong. With a bit of practice, I can now say I make a mean wok of deliciously fluffy fried rice.
Fried rice is my go-to dish when I run out of ideas for dinner or when I want the little ones to eat without fuss. It's a simple dish, using left-over ingredients. For the rice, it's best to use day-old white rice. For the meat, I use whatever leftover meat I have on hand, such as roasted pork or chicken. You can also make seafood fried rice by adding shrimp. I sometimes opt for canned SPAM if nothing else is available. Combine these ingredients with frozen vegetables, eggs and a bit of seasoning and you got yourself a quick and hearty meal.
I will now impart my wisdom on the unassuming people who are entering the kitchen to make fried rice for the first time: The most important thing to remember in making fried rice is to make sure all your ingredients are dry. What this means is (1) use day-old rice that's been in the refrigerator. Do not be tempted to use fresh rice. It will not work! It will be too moist and you will end up with soggy rice. (2) Be mindful of the water/ice in frozen vegetables. If you are using frozen vegetables, make sure you defrost them completely, or rinse them with warm water and allow them to dry completely before adding it the wok. (3) Lastly, cook the eggs before adding rice. Otherwise, moisture from the eggs will make the rice soggy. Soggy fried rice is poo.
Easy Fried Rice Recipe with Chinese Sausage (Com Chien)
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3 cloves garlic (minced)
- 3 Chinese sausages (slice thin)
- 1.5 cups frozen vegetables (corn, peas, carrots, etc. make sure to defrost and drain dry)
- 2 eggs (beaten)
- 6 cups cooked white rice (leftover day-old rice cooled in the fridge is best)
- 1 tablespoon seasoning powder (pork, chicken or mushroom)
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated white sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 green onions (optional; slice thin)
- In a large wok, heat up the vegetable oil on medium high.
- Add garlic and stir until fragrant.
- Add Chinese sausage. Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add frozen vegetables. Stir and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
- Clear an area in the wok and add eggs. Stir to break up the eggs until fully cooked and then combined with other ingredients in the wok.
- Add white rice (break up any large clumps of rice with the backside of a wooden spoon).
- Add seasoning powder, garlic powder, salt sugar and pepper.
- Toss everything together until combined. Top with green onions and serve.