(yep, that's a well-loved cast iron skillet, y'all)
Fried rice and I, well, we go way back. My family tradition was/is always to go for Chinese after church on Sundays. While in seminary, I became so familiar with a delicious Thai place that when I would call to order my Thai fried rice, they would say (with a smile you could hear) "Whitney?" I love fried rice. But, as I said earlier, I've never attempted to make it. So, when I came across this recipe in my Rachael Ray magazine that included an whimsical story of a mother and daughter having it as a welcome reward after hiking up Machu Picchu, I had to make it. It has a strange-seeming combo of Mexican and Chinese flavors (I do believe that's what in the foodie world is termed "fusion"), but just tastes fantastic. Here's Rachael's recipe (with my slight variations):
FRAGRANT FRIED RICE
- 1 cup jasmine rice
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 4 eggs, beaten
- Salt and pepper
- 3 scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts separated
- 1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
- 1 can (15.5 oz.) white beans, rinsed
- 1 cup frozen peas
and carrots mix,thawed (I prefer fresh diced carrots to frozen ones, but frozen peas really are best) 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 2 tbsp. soy sauce
1/2 cupchopped cilantro (I find that cilantro's like street preachers: a little bit goes a long way. I just used 1/4 cup)
- In a small saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, cover the rice with water and
stir until the water becomes cloudy; drain and repeat twice. Return the
rice to the saucepan, add 1 cup cold water, cover and cook over
medium-low heat until the water has been absorbed and the rice is
2520 minutes. Let sit for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork.
- Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tbsp. oil over medium-high heat. Add the eggs, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until
set and just dry, about 1 minute. Transfer to a cutting board and let cool; coarsely chop.
- In the same skillet, heat 1 tbsp. oil over medium-high heat. Add the
scallion whites and bell pepper (and carrots) and cook until crisp-
tender, about 5 minutes; season with salt and pepper. Add the beans
carrots mixand cook until heated through; transfer to a large
- In the same skillet, heat the remaining 2 tbsp. oil and the cumin over medium-high heat. Stir in the cooked rice. Spread into a single layer
and cook, undisturbed, until the rice forms a crust, about 3 minutes.
Break up the rice and sprinkle with the soy sauce. Stir in the scallion
greens, cilantro, bean mixture and eggs and cook until heated
through.So fresh and (yes) fragrant. A great veggie supper. I also added extra
fresh chopped scallions at the end and an extra sprinkle of soy sauce
on my serving.