Well, here we are again in lockdown – together. Things are slowly but surely getting back to normal here in Georgia. However, this is subject to change depending on if the cases of Covid-19 spikes again now that restaurants are slowly reopening. For those that are still not ready to step back out into the public, you may be looking for another food idea like the one I provided on Philly cheese steaks last week.
This recipe isn’t as great as what they sell at the Chinese restaurants; however, it certainly will do until they open back up. With the right amount of attentiveness, you can have a tasty Asian meal on your plate as fast as this evening.
- Cooked white rice (Jasmine or Basmati preferably)
- Chopped Onions and/or green onions
- Shrimp (preferably cooked and deveined; small)
- Scrambled eggs
- Soy Sauce (La Choy or Kikoman)
- Olive oil (or vegetable oil)
- Salt (or seasoning salt) and pepper
Start by separating all the ingredients (except the rice) into their own bowl, or, if your kitchen counter is clean and large enough, place each ingredient in its own pile. The rice should have already been prepared ahead of time. It’s best to prepare the rice at least a day in advance and then let it cool in the refrigerator. However, if you don’t have a lot of time, then you can place it in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes to try to get it as cool as possible. I cover rice preparation in a separate paragraph below. For now, get out your best frying pan. If you have a wok, that is ideal but an old school cast iron skillet or any other large frying pan will do the trick.
Pour in about a couple of tablespoons of olive oil or vegetable oil. Get the grease hot. Grab a handful of onions, then the scrambled eggs (these should be prepared ahead of time also), and then the shrimp. Keep tossing the items together in the pan with a spatula until the meat and the vegetables start to brown. (Shrimp may release a watery substance while it is cooking. To avoid this messing up the pan, you can add the shrimp after the rice is added) Now grab the white rice and toss it in little by little, continuing to incorporate the ingredients. I prefer this way because just dumping in the full bowl is not the best idea, but it can be done if you have a huge wok. Sometimes the rice may soak up all the grease, so if it begins to stick to the pan, lift up the ingredients and pour in more oil. Keep tossing. Add a little salt and pepper if you like. Keep tossing. When the rice and shrimp seem to be warm, add the soy sauce. I will leave the amount to your discretion because some like a lot of soy sauce and others don’t like a lot. Keep tossing. If you want to add other vegetables to make it more of a stir-fry, now is a good time to add those in.
Once the food is nice and hot and the soy sauce seems to be incorporated evenly, put the food on your plate or in your bowl and chow down.
Preparing the Rice
The trick to making fried rice is to make sure that the cooked rice is nice and cold before you prepare it to avoid it sticking to the pan. I would advise preparing the rice a day before and sitting it in the fridge, covered. I like using a rice cooker to prepare my rice because it creates a perfect pot of rice every time. However, if you don’t have one, just use a sauce pan. The key to making rice perfect like you see in restaurants is to follow instructions on the label. Whatever the water to rice ratio is, stick to it or you may have a gooey mess on your hand. Usually the ratio of water to rice is 2 cups of water for 1 cup of rice but make sure that you read the label. Cook the rice for the time that is mentioned on the label and do not stir it while it is cooking. If you have the right ratio, the rice will cook itself. When it is done, it will look fluffy and taste fluffy. If it is not done, it will still be stiff and crunchy. This is why it is best to use a rice cooker because it makes life much easier. Let the rice cool 30 minutes to an hour before spooning it out of the pan into a bowl. Cover the bowl and let it cool in the fridge until you are ready to make the fried rice.
I hope you like this segment of my blog. Check back for more food ideas during the lockdown. If you have any questions about preparing this meal, leave them in the comments section or contact me directly here.
Image courtesy of ID 159831736 © Kravtzov | Dreamstime.com