Succulent Pork Fried Rice

Leftovers can be a daunting challenge at times when it comes to sparking kitchen creativity… and they do have a tendency to cause the fridge to slowly and unassumedly fill and burst at its seams. The recent holiday meals spawned a rather large collection of covered containers to appear almost mysteriously in the confines of our refrigerator, an iron chef’s challenge to turn an array of succulent morsels into new and spectacular incarnations.  One recent evening we took on the challenge of the smoked pork loin sitting saucily on a prominent eye level shelf, daring us to create something outrageously delicious, wonderfully quick and undeniably easy.  We lifted lids on plastic containers in the refrigerator, explored the recesses of the freezer and scoured the pantry shelves to see what ingredients might come together in palate pleasing harmony.  A decision was made… dinner would be a mouth-watering fried rice generously laced with succulent cubes of smoked pork garnished with a sprinkling of red chili flakes.  The refrigerator produced a bowl of cold long-grained rice as well as a handful of small prawns.  Green onions were pulled from the crisper and a package of frozen petite green peas was resurrected from the freezer.

One would typically expect that char siu be used in the preparation of fried rice… and that expectation would be correct.  Char siu literally means fork burn/roast after the way in which this dish is traditionally cooked.  Long forks are used to skewer long strips of seasoned boneless pork which is then roasted in an oven or over a fire.  The pork, typically a shoulder cut, is seasoned with a mixture of honey, fermented tofu, five-spice powder, dark soy sauce, hoisin sauce and, optionally, sherry or rice wine.  Red food coloring is not a traditional ingredient but is commonly used in today’s preparation of char sui.  These seasonings are what turn the exterior of the meat its distinctive dark red color.  Char siu is often available in Chinese take-out establishments so if your refrigerator contains no smoked pork be assured that your craving for a delicious fried rice at home can be readily satisfied!

Smoked Pork Fried Rice

 

At least one day in advance cook the long-grained white rice according to package directions and refrigerate… this preparation calls for 5 – 6 cups of cold rice.  For the omelette whisk, in a small bowl:

  • 4 -5 large eggs

To a heavy 12-inch skillet, over moderate heat, add:

  • 2 T unsalted butter

When the butter has melted, add the beaten eggs and swirl the pan continuously as they cook to create a near paper-thin omelette, which will be very quickly!

Flip the omelette in half over itself:

Transfer to a cutting board and slice thinly, setting the prepared omelette to the side:

Flake so that the grains do not stick together and set aside:

  • 5 – 6 C cold cooked long-grained white rice

Shell, devein and cut in half, then set aside:

  • 1 C small fresh prawns

Prepare and set aside:

  • 1 C cubed smoked pork

Measure and set to the side:

  • 1 C frozen petite green peas

Chop on the diagonal and set aside:

  • 3 scallions, greens included

Set aside:

  • 2 handfuls fresh bean sprouts

Measure and set aside:

  • 2 T oyster sauce
  • 3 T Tamari sauce

Chef’s Note:  Tamari is a sauce similar to soy in that it is also  dark and made from soybeans.  Tamari, however, has a distinctively mellow flavor.  It is used primarily as a basting or dipping sauce, as well as a table condiment.

Heat in a wok over high heat:

  • 5 T peanut oil

When the oil is beginning to smoke, add the prawns:

Stir quickly, turning them in the oil until they turn pink, approximately 30 seconds.  Transfer them to a sieve over a bowl to drain:

Return the drained oil to the wok and add:

  • the smoked pork

Cook just long enough to heat thoroughly, stirring all the while.  Immediately add:

  • the rice

Stir rapidly until throroughly heated without browning:

Add:

  • the peas

Quickly stir to combine:

Make a well in the center and add:

  •  the sliced omelette

Stir quickly with the wok utensils in a circular fashion to combine:

Add:

  • the oyster sauce and the tamari sauce
  • salt to taste

Quickly stir to combine.  Add:

  • the scallions, reserving a third for garnish

Quickly stir to combine.  Add:

  • the bean sprouts

Stir and toss, about 30 seconds, and immediately plate for service.  Garnish with:

  • the reserved scallions
  • red chili pepper flakes

Serve this tasty and satisfying one-dish meal piping hot.  It’s a spectacular way to showcase those delicious left-overs… Bon Appetit!

Copyright 2010 Via Aurea Designs, Inc., All Rights Reserved

 

 

 

 

 

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Categories: Pork, Rice

Author:Steve Meyer & Dayton Azevedo

Food and fine cooking have been our passion for many years, fueled by the year-around abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables, poultry and meats, as well as aromatic spices and herbs readily available to us here in the San Francisco Bay Area, making adventuresome, creative and delicious 5-star cooking a reality in our kitchen. Our aim is to make it yours as well by utilizing our step by step instructions and serial photographs. Bon Appetit from our kitchen to yours...!

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