Friday, August 8, 2008

Pork Fried Rice

Marinade for Pork:
1 tbl soy sauce
1 tsp hoisin sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
½ tsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp chopped garlic
couple twists of fresh black pepper, 1/4 tsp maybe? maybe not so much

large take-out white rice (maybe 5 cups?), at least a day old
½ cup corn
½ cup peas
½ cup chopped onion
1 lb pork cutlets
2 eggs
1 tbl water
2-3 tbls soy sauce

Mix up the marinade and add it and the pork to a plastic zipper bag. Mix them up together and set aside, it should marinate for about a half hour. Beat the two eggs and tablespoon of water together. Heat up your stirfry pan with a little oil over med-high heat, once it's hot add the eggs. Let them sit till they are almost done, then pull in edges and let the raw egg run to the sides so it cooks. Flip it over and let cook for a minute longer then remove from pan and set aside. Wipe out any leftover bits of egg from pan. Add more oil. If the peas and corn are frozen toss them in the pan to defrost and heat through then remove to a paper towel lined bowl to pull off the liquid. If they are canned or fresh, don't worry about it. Add more oil to the pan if needed then add the onion. Brown the onion for several minutes then set aside. Remove the pork from the marinade and broil it till browned and cooked through. While the pork is cooking add more oil to the pan, if needed, and put the rice in. Mix it around to coat with oil, breaking up any clumps. If you want it browned let it sit for a while, then stir. Repeat till it is as brown as you want it. Then add the soy sauce. Stir. When the pork is done, remove it and cut it into strips. Also cut the egg into strips and add everything in with the rice. Stir for a minute or two to make sure the egg and vegetables are heated through. Serve.


While doing a little research for this recipe I learned something interesting. Apparently in China they don't add soy sauce to fried rice, it's just white rice fried in a little oil. Seems odd to me, but hey. Whatever you're into. After I made this I thought of a few changes that I am going to make the next time I do it. For one I think I am going to add the marinade from the pork to the rice instead of plain soy sauce. After cooking the marinade to get rid of raw porkiness of course. I think the flavor would be much better. Plus I underestimated how much soy sauce I would need to give it good color/richness. But on the plus side the rice came out with a much lighter flavor than usual and since I used a nonstick stirfry pan I didn't need to use much oil at all. So this fried rice recipe is fairly light in flavor making it a good, non-overpowering side and pretty light in fat content.

All right, first thing is to make the marinade. Mix together the tablespoon of soy sauce, teaspoon of hoisin, teaspoon of sesame oil, half teaspoon of vinegar, teaspoon of sugar and teaspoon of chopped garlic. Now this is a pretty basic marinade, feel free to change it to your tastes. If you want it sweeter add more sugar, you want it more sesame-y add a tsp of sesame seeds. I would have put some ginger in (1/4 tsp or so) if I had had some, but I'm out. More hoisin wouldn't hurt either, it's a great flavor too. Now I had some pasture raised pork cutlets that I got at a farmers market a while ago, which I love because they are really lean (which I'm a fan of) and the animals were treated well. I have no problem eating meat but I really do prefer when the animals are treated well. I won't eat veal or foie gras for example. But, you can use a chunk of loin or a couple chops for this too. But you want to marinate it in cutlet form so when you slice it after cooking you have marinade flavor on the outside and pork flavor on the inside. Toss the pork into a zipper bag followed by the marinade. Mix it up so the marinade gets on all the meat then squeeze out as much air as you can and twist the top of the bag. This keeps all the marinade in contact with the meat. Now you want to let it marinade for about a half hour. While it is marinating you can start everything else. For the corn and peas I used frozen. So what I did was dumped them into a hot, lightly oiled nonstick stir fry pan and cooked them till they were heated through. Then I put them into a paper towel lined bowl so the towels could sop up the excess grease and any water they put out. Apparently I forgot to take a picture of that. Whoops. Oh well, next you beat the eggs and water together. Water helps the eggs mix together. Now pour the egg into your hot stir fry pan. Let it sit for a bit then pull the edges in to let as much liquid as possible pour onto the pan surface, like an omelet. Once it is almost done flip it as best you can. I didn't forget to take a picture of this, I just didn't want you guys to see the disaster I made of it. I can't flip omelets either. Heh. Put that aside, you will be cutting it into strips later. After you remove the egg wipe up any leftover little bits of it so it doesn't burn.Next add a little more oil to the pan and brown up the onion. You don't want to heat an empty nonstick pan, in case you didn't know. It's bad for the pan and releases nasty fumes. But, just toss the onion into the pan and let it sit for a minute. If you want it soft let it sit a long time, stirring occasionally. If you want it crispy just leave it on till it starts to brown then take it out. Now is probably a good time to toss the pork under the broiler. First pull them out of the marinade and pat them dry then put them on a broiler rack, or if you are like me a foil lined baking pan because you don't trust your broiler rack and certainly don't want to clean the thing. Next time I make this I am going to reserve the marinade and use it as the liquid in the rice instead of plain soy sauce. The good thing about cutlets is they cook really fast under the broiler. Just put them under till they are cooked. When they are done, take them out. Aren't you glad I'm here to tell you these things? Heh. Let them sit for a couple minutes then slice them, against the grain, into thin strips. While the pork is broiling toss the rice into the pan, adding more oil if you need to first. I'm using a large, restaurant bought order of plain white rice. You can cook your own if you want. I forgot to measure how much was in the container... sorry. It is also important to let it sit at least overnight in the fridge. This keeps it from getting all mushy. Now break up all the clumps. There are two basic schools of thought on how to do fried rice. One is heat it through and it's done. The other is crisp and brown the rice. That's what I like. Unfortunately non-stick doesn't do it that well. It's the price you pay for lighter cooking. But if you want it to brown don't constantly stir it, let it sit for a couple minutes in between stirrings. Once it is as brown as you want add the rest of the soy sauce. If you are using the marinade you will want to boil it for a minute before adding it in. The best way I can think of is boiling it before adding the rice, pouring it out into a bowl or something then frying the rice. Mix the rice with whichever liquid you use. If the rice isn't as dark as you want add some more soy sauce. It came out pretty light for me this time. Now toss in the vegetables, sliced meat and sliced egg. Mix it for a while, making sure whatever has been sitting is reheated. And that's it. Fried rice. Enjoy. Other things you can do with it is switch the pork with chicken, beef, tofu or really any other kind of meat or meat-like product (or nothing at all, if you want). I also like bean sprouts, chopped water chestnuts, cashew or almond chunks, strips of nappa cabbage, carrot sticks, pretty much anything. Fried rice is kind of like stew, toss in what you have.

No comments:


Blog Widget by LinkWithin