Love fried rice, I know I do, and I am going to teach you how to make this classic fried rice at home.
One of the most common side dishes is their delicious fried rice when you go to a Chinese restaurant. But we can’t always go to a restaurant or order takeaway.
And with Covid-19 still around and restrictions in place, it can be hard to be able to enjoy those foods we like. So why not make it at home.
Although the steps may appear daunting, I can assure you it is so simple, and the best part you can even prepare your rice as far in advance as the day before.
Also great if you have any leftover rice from a meal you just had.
And once the rice is prepared, it only takes about 10 minutes to do the rest.
What is the best rice to use when making fried rice?
Trying to find the right rice to use for your fried rice recipe is not too daunting. Try not to overthink things too much.
Basmati is the rice I use for mine, and it turns out excellent each time. Other options are Jasmine rice or other types of long and medium-grain kinds of rice.
Basmati is long-grain white rice. It has a nutty flavor and floral aroma. Mostly know to be used in rice pilaf or to go alongside a curry dish. It is also great to use for this classic fried rice recipe.
There is both a white and brown Basmati, and a cup of this rice contains fewer calories than jasmine.
Like the Basmati, Jasmine rice is another excellent option for fried rice.
It is a medium to long-grain rice. And just like the basmati is has a nutty flavor and a fragrant aroma.
Well known for being used for dishes cook for the Southeast Asian cuisine.
White or Brown Rice
Of course, brown rice will be healthier than white; both the basmati and jasmine have white and brown options.
You can use either for fried rice; brown rice may change the taste and texture as the rice grain itself is different in taste and texture due to it being wholegrain.
But both varieties are fine to use for fried rice.
What are the ingredients for Chinese fried rice?
Of course, rice is the main ingredient. Other components to get as close to a restaurant-style classic fried rice at home is eggs, peas, small prawns (if you eat them), Bertucci Peking pork or Chinese sausage, and spring onion.
However, there are loads of other ingredient ideas you can add.
Adding carrots and corn are great for adding more color and vegetables. You can swap the Peking pork or Chinese sausage for bacon. You can even add bean shoots if you like.
You can even go as far as adding some garlic or even pieces of chicken.
What is the secret ingredient in fried rice?
I am a firm believer; it is the sauce you use. To give your fried rice the full potential of being flavourful, you need to coat it in the right sauce.
Without the sauce, it can still have a bland taste even with all the other ingredients added because of the rice itself.
Most recipes will say oyster sauce, Chinese cooking wine, Japanese cooking wine, or even dry sherry.
But to be honest, I have found that a simple few splashes of soy sauce are by far the most successful when it comes to the taste.
What is the best oil to use in classic fried rice at home?
If you are using a wok to make this in, then peanut oil is the best to use. A wok is made to withstand up to 500°F or 260°C and peanut oil have a high smoke point to handle the high temperature of a wok. Other oils you should not use if you are going to be cooking in a wok.
However, if you are using a skillet or fry pan, you can still use peanut oil as it will help to create that authentic flavor. But there are other options such as vegetable oil, olive oil, and even butter.
How to prepare the Rice for Fried Rice
Rinse The Rice
One of the first steps you need to do before cooking your rice is to rinse it.
Rinsing your rice helps removes any excess starch that is on the rice.
There are two ways to do this, and both work just as well. The first one is to put your uncooked rice in a small holed strainer and run lukewarm water over the rice until the water runs clear.
The second way is to put your rice in a pot, cover it with warm water, swish it around with your hand a few times and drain the water out while using your hand to stop the rice from falling out. However, in this way, you are unable to drain the water entirely. You will have to repeat this step quite a few times until the water in the pot is as clear as possible.
I recommend ricing your rice in s stainer unless you do not have one on hand at the time.
Cooking the rice.
Be careful when cooking your rice; you do not want to overcook it as it will become too soggy and gluggy.
When cooking your rice, cook as usual. But once it is getting near ready. Test your rice. You want your rice to have a very slight crunch to it.
When you get to this stage, it is time to drain your rice. Yes, you read correctly; drain your rice. Do not let your water simmer away.
Do a second rinse.
After you have drained your rice, run it under hot water again until the water runs clear. Doing this removes any starch that has been left behind from the first rinse.
Steaming your rice.
Once rinsed, sit the colander in the saucepan and cover the rice with a lid that will fit or aluminum foil.
As your rice is still hot, it will steam the rice and cook it the rest of the way through. Doing this will allow you to have soft cooked rice while still be able to have the rice stay firm enough to stay in tack while frying it.
Let it sit for an hour or two like this.
Note – This step is optional, but I find I get the best results doing this. If you do not want to do this, feel free to cook your rice till just tender before draining.
Dry out the rice.
Now it is time to dry out your rice. Spread your rice out over a plate or baking tray. Gently break up any clumps of rice with the back of a spoon.
Then put it in the refrigerator until ready to use.
If you need to use it a lot sooner, you can skip this step if you use the steam method as the rice does dry out after a couple of hours while sitting in the colander.
If you do not use the steam option, when the rice is strained completely, you can spread it out on the tray or plate, let it cool and place in the fridge.
Can you use same day rice for fried rice?
Of course, if you decide last minute to cook fried rice, you can use it straight away if you need to.
Once your rice is cooked and drained, let it sit to dry out while you prepare the rest of your ingredients. It will give the rice a little time to dry out before adding it to the frypan or wok.
Can I Make Fried Rice In A Frypan or skillet instead of a Wok?
Suppose you do not own a wok yet but have a deep frypan or skillet. Then yes, you can make your fried rice in it.
Ensure the pan or skillet is deep enough; this way, you can adequately combine your ingredients. Otherwise, you are going to have a very messy stovetop.
However, a wok is handy to have, and if you have the one with the second handle on it, you will be able to toss the ingredients to help combine them instead of stirring. Of course, this also depends on how heavy your wok is also.
Why is my fried rice soggy?
If you find that you end up with soggy fried rice, you may have used too many ingredients. I know it can be easy to get carried away. Adding all sorts of vegetables create something full of flavor and color full.
But it would be best if you kept your fried rice ingredients down to only a few.
The reason for this is, fried rice needs a hot heat to fry. The more ingredients you add, the more the temperature of your frypan or wok will drop. Which then gives you the result of soggy fried rice.
Classic Fried Rice
- 1 cup White Rice
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 4 Egg Yolks
- 100 g Bertucci Peking Pork or leg ham
- ½ tbsp Salt
- 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
- Rinse and cook rice. Re-rinse and dry out on a plate or baking tray in the refrigerator.
- Heat oil in a wok or frypan over a high heat.
- Separate the eggs yolks. And wisk. Once the oil is hot add the whisked egg yolks and scramble.
- Add the frozen peas and stir continuously. You can put these in the microwave for a minute before had if you like.
- After about a minute add the bertucci peking pork and stir continuously for a couple of minutes.
- Turn the heat down to low or a low medium, add the rice and season with salt. You can do this to taste. Toss or fold the rice into the ingredents until all combined and the rice is warmed through.
- Add the soy sauce, a little at a time until the rice is just coated.