When people go to Chinese restaurants and takeaways in the UK, whatever they end up choosing to eat, many like to accompany the dish with fried rice. It’s almost a cliche now, but millions of people can’t be wrong!
Chinese egg fried rice is a fantastic add-on when you’re having a chicken curry or a sweet and sour recipe. Noodles are the obvious exception – I can’t imagine many folk deciding on both noodles and rice. At least, not unless they are carbo loading for an upcoming ultra-marathon.
You’ll find dozens of different recipes for this rice accompaniment, and the one I’m going to share here is a nice quick and simple version. It does taste like the ones I’ve had from Chinese takeaways in the past. You can kind of add whatever you like to it, and there are lots of recipes which add peas, finely diced carrots and green spring onions.
In my version, I hadn’t got any spring onions to hand, so I omitted them. If you want to use them yourself feel free – just chop them and stir them into the hot rice towards the end of cooking to retain a little crunch. I used a small white onion, finely chopped, which is best cooked out early to knock off the rawness and soften it a little.
Best Fried Rice Results
For the best results when cooking fried rice, always start out with boiled or steamed rice that has been allowed to cool down and dry out somewhat for at least two hours. I usually recommend spreading the boiled rice out on a plate, letting it cool completely, and then keeping it in the refrigerator overnight. Then use it for egg fried fried the next day.
If you don’t do this, the rice will be too “wet” and will probably just turn to a mush when you try to cook it. Some recipes like to go a little overboard.
They recommend wearing a pair of Marigolds rubber gloves, then spraying the chilled rice with cooking oil and separating it out by hand, so that every grain is coated with oil. This does lead to quicker cooking and less chance of burning or sticking – you need a very hot wok for this recipe!
I don’t generally do this, opting instead to break up any clumps of rice in the wok during cooking, using the back of my spoon or spatula.
(And I’ll hold my hands up right now and come clean: making this batch of fried rice today, I was using a wooden spatula and got a bit carried away bashing the clumps apart. I actually snapped the spatula in half! So that’s another “pro” tip – use a metal chef spoon or a flat metal wok spatula for this recipe. M’kay.)
Right, let’s get frying!
- Approx 1.5-2 cups of cooked white (or basmati) rice – cooled for at least 2 hours
- 1 small white onion, finely chopped
- 100 g frozen garden peas
- 2 medium sized eggs
- 2 tbsp light soy sauce
- 0.5 tsp ground black pepper
- sprinkle of Chinese Five Spice Powder
- light drizzle of sesame oil
How To Cook Chinese Egg Fried Rice
Heat a wok until it is very hot and then add 2 tbsp of vegetable oil. Carefully swirl the oil around to coat the inside of the wok and then add the chopped onion. Stir fry rapidly to prevent burning or sticking.
After 2 or 3 minutes add the frozen peas and continue to stir-fry. After another 3 minutes, crack 2 eggs into the wok. Break them up an scramble them in the wok, mixing the eggs with the other ingredients.
Continue stir-frying the ingredients until the egg is cooked and no longer liquid. Then immediately add the pre-cooked rice and again stir to mix all the ingredients. Break up any clumps of rice and separate all the grains so it all cooks evenly. The rice should crackle as it cooks, otherwise turn up the heat.
After 3 or 4 minutes on a high heat and with constant stirring add the soy sauce, black pepper and sprinkle in a small amount of five spice powder (either store-bought, or make it yourself using this 5-spice recipe).
Stir for another minute until all the soy sauce is incorporated, then turn off the heat, drizzle with a little sesame oil and stir to combine. Taste the rice and adjust with a little salt if needed – but remember the soy sauce is salty, so you might not need any extra salt.
Chinese egg fried rice is a perfect partner for any Asian recipes that are usually served with steamed rice. It makes a delicious addition to my Chinese chicken curry recipe. Hope you enjoy it!