Monday, February 4, 2013
Vegetarian Fried Rice
I loooooove rice! I've always said that I could live off rice alone. And I think I could. Have you ever seen that show "My Strange Addiction" on TLC? Yeah, if someone could live off dryer sheets, I think I could live off rice! Steamed white rice with soy sauce is my go to. It's comfort food at it's finest. Ok, I know this is not true for everyone, but when I need something to calm my tummy or my emotions, the rice maker is my best friend! The stove top method is just as easy but takes a little more attention.
Rice is great because you can do so many things with it. And I love all kinds of rice. Spanish rice. Fried rice. Brown rice. Rice pilaf. Even Rice-a-Roni! Fried rice is quick and easy. I love it because you can make it with whatever you've got in the fridge: veggies, meat, day-old rice.
I usually use a combination of olive and sesame oils to add a little extra flavor right off the bat. Sometimes I'll throw in diced onions and grated garlic, and ginger, if I have some. Lots of delicious flavor right there. Standard fried rice veggies are carrots, broccoli, peas. I've also seen red bell pepper, and jalapenos in Thai fried rice. It all depends on your taste preferences. I like to finish my fried rice off with soy sauce to make it extra yummy.
The fried rice I made this time was the easiest I've ever made. I used a couple handfuls of my Broccoli Slaw and Kale Salad in place of chopped vegetables. The salad is so hearty, and uses veggies not just greens, so it stands up to the cooking really well. I also tried Bragg's Liquid Aminos instead of soy sauce. I had bought this awhile back because I've seen a lot of recipes that use it in place of soy sauce. I never tried it though because I love soy sauce so much and I was worried that the Liquid Aminos wouldn't be as good. But it was! The flavor is a little different but still just as yummy. I found that I was able to use less of the Liquid Aminos than of the soy sauce, since it is a little saltier. You can find out more about Liquid Aminos at the Bragg Live Food website.
Vegetarian Fried Rice
1 Tbsp each Olive Oil and Sesame Oil
1/4 cup diced onions
2 cloves garlic, grated
1/2 in fresh ginger, grated
2 cups cooked day-old rice (white or brown)
2 eggs scrambled
1 cup mixed veggies
Heat the oils together in a large saute pan or wok. When the oil is hot add onions and cook out for a minute or so until the onions appear translucent. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for 30 seconds or so. I use a microplane to grate the garlic and ginger so there is no chance of biting into big chunks, just lots of flavor.
Next add the rice. You can break up the clumps of rice using your spatula. Toss the rice in the oil, onion and garlic mixture to coat the rice. Let it cook and heat through. It should be sizzling. While it cooks you can scramble your eggs. Once the rice is warmed up, push the rice to the sides of the pan and drop the eggs in the well you've created. Move them around to cook. Once they are mostly cooked begin to incorporate them into the rice. Mix it all up.
Now you can add the veggies. I like to use pre-cooked veggies. If you don't have any, just cut them up small so that they cook quickly. If you'd like you can blanch the veggies by boiling them for 2-3 minutes and then removing them from the water. The 1 cup measurement is just a guess-timate. I will usually cut up a carrot, half a zucchini, a small head of broccoli, a handful of frozen green beans, and/or a quarter of a red bell pepper. So it's likely there's more than a cup of veggies. Either way, toss all the veggies in with the rice and eggs and mix it all up. You can cover it at this point to cook the veggies if you need to. Let them heat through if they are already cooked.
Lastly, add the soy sauce. I never measure this part. Usually I will swirl it over the pan a few times all the way around, then toss. Taste it, and add more if necessary. Remember it's ok to start with less and then add a little at a time till it's right. You can't take it out once you've added too much.
We ate ours with Aidell's Teriyaki Chicken and Pineapple Meatballs, which I warmed in Yoshida's and Soy Sauce. We had to add some meat!