Every home cook has a few easy non-dishes under their belt that taste flavorful and will brighten up their day. I just discovered a ginger fried rice recipe by Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, a master of home cooking. Using the simplest ingredients (leftover rice and eggs) and some aromatics, this recipe produces wonders. Here it is with a video introduction, and you can find it on the New York Times Cooking website.
Step 1: Heat 1/4 cup peanut oil over medium heat. Cook garlic and ginger until crisp brown. Transfer to paper towels and salt lightly.
Step 2: Cook leek over peanut oil over medium-low heat for 10 minutes. Season with salt.
Step 3: Raise heat to medium and add rice, stirring occasionally. Season with salt.
Step 4: Top with an egg, in whatever way you want it cooked.
When I tried out this recipe, I used the one large onion in my pantry instead of using leeks, and after slicing the onion I cooked it under medium-low for more than 20 minutes to caramelize it and bring out its sweetness. I also ran out of fresh ginger roots, so I used week-old, locally-produced fermented minced ginger from my fridge. Instead of frying the eggs, I scrambled them with a little sea salt and green scallion in the egg mixture. The result is a festival of flavors and textures: the ginger and garlic crisp and golden, the onions sweet and soft, the leftover, dried-out rice become moist again, the eggs highly nutritious. I highly recommend it.
- If using fresh rice instead of leftover rice, either keep it wrapped in the fridge for some time or lay it out on a surface to dry.
- To caramelize the onions, keep the heat low to avoid burning.
- You can basically cook eggs any way you like and it won’t affect the overall quality of the dish.
- Don’t forget to garnish with soy sauce and some sesame oil, or pretty much anything that goes with rice. I prefer toasted sesame seeds and some Chinese chili sauce.