We grew up with some hard times as my father had opened a private school and was struggling to keep it afloat. Sometimes, there wouldn't even be bread in our cupboard. We, the kids, were in our own world of friends, books and exams and didn't realise the intensity of our hardship then. My mother had to manage with whatever vegs was in the fridge that day. So she came up with simple fried rice that used very basic ingredients of carrot, beans and potato. When we had eggs in our pantry, it was a big bonus for us!
I share this recipe with you so that you can try and taste a slightly soury spicy and what I call a poor man's fried rice, courtesy of my mom. But she used to deep fry the vegetables - this was way before the whole clean cooking concept was introduced. The vegetables are steamed here for a healthier version. My mom now 74, is quite fleunt in English and can carry a conversation with a taxi driver or with her doctor too! Sometimes, when put in the deep end of the pool, you hv no choice but to quickly swim to stay afloat!
Ingredients (Serves 4)
- 1.5 cups Jasmine Rice, cooked with less water to ensure grains don't stick to each other (roughly 2.5 cups) You can use any other white rice but Jasmine rice is popular in Chinese cooking for its fragrance
- 2 tbsps canola oil
- 1 medium onion, minced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 green chilli, sliced
- 1.5 tsps tomato ketchup
- 1.5 tsps Chilli paste
- 1tbsp light soysauce
- 1 potatoe, skinned, cubed small and steamed
- 1/3 small carrot, cubed small and steamed
- 2 long beans, cut into 2 cm pieces, steamed
- 1 tsp dark soy sauce
- Scallions for garnish
- Small limes
- Chilli padi in soy sauce
- Slices of cucumber and tomatoes for extra nourishment
- 4eggs, boiled or cooked sunny side up or scrambled.
- Heat a big wok and add the canola oil.
- When it is hot, add the minced onion, garlic and green chilli and fry till onion and garlic turn light brown.
- Then, add the tomato ketchup, chilli paste and light soy sauce. Give it a good stir and let the sauces mingle.
- After around 3-5 mins, add in all the steamed vegetables and mix well. Since the vegs are already cooked, just stirring will be sufficient.
- Next, add in the cooked rice and drizzle dark soy sauce over.
- Mix well but gently so that the rice doesn't get all mushy.
- Check for flavor and add a little soy sauce if the sodium isnt enough.
- Make the eggs per your preference.
- Have sliced small limes and chilli padi in light soy sauce on standby. Serve with the eggs on the side and garnished with the scallions, cucumber and tomato slices.