Harvest Monday – 13 August 2012 – And tips on making Fried Rice at home

13 Aug

Much smaller harvest this week, mostly because I haven’t ventured outside to pick any of it. I still have tomatoes hanging off mostly-dead plants and other stuff waiting for picking.

2 kilograms Daikon and Swedes

I took these along to some of the other mothers at Playgroup. One of the Japanese mums showed me pictures of how she used the daikon from last week, and she used not only the daikon root, but the leaves and also the skins! I really should have asked for a copy of the photo to post.

2 Sticks of Celery and 3 leaves of Silverbeet

My friend Sarah took these home with her after visiting today.

A few more blueberries

Average of 4 eggs per day

I always forget to account for the eggs in these posts, particularly as they have slowed over winter. The laying rate has picked up a bit, now about 4 per day.

3 Spring Onions

4 Carrots

250g Peas

All of these went into some kimchi fried rice that I made last night. Kimchi is a-mazing in fried rice. It adds a sour and spicy element to a dish that already has a lot of salty-sweetness. I made Kim chi from the wombok harvested a couple of weeks ago, and this batch was a winner. I’ve been eating it as a snack ever since.

Tips on making great fried rice at home

To pad my post this week I might arrogantly share my fried rice making tips, because I think mine is pretty good.

1. Start with leftover rice, cold and dry. Rice that has been left uncovered in the refrigerator for a few hours is ideal. If I’m cooking rice for a particular dish I will often intentionally cook too much so I can make fried rice a day or 2 later. In the photo above I didn’t dry the rice out, so the texture wasn’t as good as it could have been.

2. Use as much oil as you think you can stomach, then double it. Fried rice has an insane amount of oil. It glistens in the restaurant for a reason.

3. Use a super-hot wok or pan. You want the rice to stick a bit and get burnt on to the pan, because those little charred bits add flavour.

4.Use very little in the way of seasonings. I fry the ingredients in vegetable oil and some honey, then add only a little soy sauce and sesame oil right at the end. I used to make the mistake of adding soy sauce until the dish is sufficiently salty, but fried rice really shouldn’t have much soy at all. It will taste wrong if you add too much, and worse – it will steam instead of fry.  Just add a little bit, then add normal salt to obtain sufficient saltiness.

5. Start the process by making an omelette. Once again, heat lots of oil, then beat a few eggs with a dash of light soy sauce and sesame oil. At high heat, pour all of the egg in and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Roll it up in the pan (well before it cooks right through), then roll it around so that the outside of the rolled omelette browns slightly. Remove it from the pan before it is cooked through – you want the inside to stay a bit runny because it will continue to cook on residual heat. Slice the omelette into thick strips and reserve until the end, then add to the fried rice just before serving.

6. Don’t be afraid of using brown rice. I know that the chinese restaurant always uses white rice, but I used brown rice this week and it works just fine.

For more harvests from around the world, visit Daphne’s Dandelions.

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12 Responses to “Harvest Monday – 13 August 2012 – And tips on making Fried Rice at home”

  1. Daphne August 13, 2012 at 11:53 pm #

    I use leftover rice too. Usually when I cook rice I make too much and freeze it until I need it. I never use as much oil as the dish calls for though. I just can’t stand that much. It does make it like the restaurant variety though.

  2. maryhysong August 14, 2012 at 2:22 am #

    carrots peas and onions, wonderful! I’m tired of the heat and getting sick of squash; I”m ready for fall!

  3. crafty_cristy August 14, 2012 at 3:47 am #

    I love fried rice, and thank you for your tips. These will help make my fried rice better. I have always wondered about those crispy bits you get at restaurants. I could never make my fried rice do that.

  4. Michelle August 14, 2012 at 3:10 pm #

    Oh yum, I do like fried rice! You’ve got lots of great tips and it’s good to know that it is good made with brown rice, my fave. Oh, and I’m not afraid of using plenty of oil either. Do you have a favorite vegetable oil for stir frying? My favorite for stir frying or any high heat sauteing is rice bran oil, it has a nice mild clean nutty flavor that isn’t too assertive.

    • L from 500m2 in Sydney August 14, 2012 at 3:14 pm #

      Yes Michelle – I use rice bran oil too. That’s what I used here. As far as oil is concerned, I’m not too worried about it either. I’ve never had a weight problem and the kids are active. I’m happy that dishes like this are a great source of fibre and vitamins. Extra calories every now an then won’t hurt, particularly unsaturated vegetable oils.
      I won’t mention the husband, but portion control is his problem…

  5. Lilian August 14, 2012 at 7:29 pm #

    “I won’t mention the husband, but portion control is his problem…”

    Ahh… at this rate he might have to go on another diet! Well done on the fried rice. Yes soya sauce is the bane of fried rice. I think people think that it’s an Asian dish so we add saltiness by adding soya sauce naturally? My Father-in-law shakes his wise head – no, no, never soya sauce, always salt. It’s so hard to get that generation to teach you how to cook because honestly they don’t know how to write a recipe, it’s all in their head… they ‘add to taste’ – and all I want to know is how many teaspoons?? He just looks at me blankly and takes a handful and tosses it in – about that much says he… 🙂

  6. Louise August 14, 2012 at 7:55 pm #

    I love home made fried rice, but I confess I never make it. The Chinese-style dishes are the territory of my lovely lad ( I make the Thai -style). All I can say is that he makes a mean one, but I cant offer tips or even say what he does the same or differently to you, except that he does use left over dryish rice and sometimes we make more rice than we need to just to have left overs. I will show him your version.

  7. kitsapfg August 14, 2012 at 10:52 pm #

    Thanks for the tips on making really great fried rice! I enjoy this and use leftover rice in a variety of dishes – this included – but my fried rice has never been anything but mediocre. I bet with your tips I can improve on that. 😀

  8. Liz August 14, 2012 at 11:11 pm #

    I make fried rice quite often but never well, I try an aim for more of a nasi goreng rather Chinese style, but I reckon if I adapt your tips to that I shoudl have more joy.

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