Malay fried rice (#10)

The mass pillaging of Nigella recipes stops now. Well, it’s in abeyance for this one as I have a lovely cake of hers lined up for Sunday.

In the meantime, however, I am following a Mary Berry recipe from her Absolute Favourites: Malay Fried Rice. We all love a one pot (or something very near to being a one pot). It’s pretty tasty, and you can make a large batch to reheat throughout the week. I’ve skipped the whole fried egg stage. Why add a complication to a simple dish?

Stages: boil the rice & peas. Cook the chicken, remove. Cook the veg. Add the mushrooms & spices, combine & cook. Re-add the chicken & rice, add soy sauce, combine & cook. Eat.

Good things: Nifty little dish to serve up, that’s filling and stress free.

Bad things: Can be tad dry if you under-do the soy.

Ingredients (4 big portions, 6 for a multi-course dinner party)

  • 250g basmati rice
  • 150g frozen peas
  • garlic oil (or just regular oil)
  • 2 skinless chicken breast
  • 1 tablespoom of runny honey
  • 2 onions
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 red pepper
  • 200g button mushrooms
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 tablespoon medium curry powder
  • 4-5 tablespoons of soy sauce (I prefer light regardless of the recipe)
  • salt and pepper

Required

  • Saucepan & colander (for the rice)
  • Large wok (or large saucepan could do)

Preparation stage:

  1. Put a saucepan of salted walter on the hob to boil.
  2. Measure out 250g of rice in a large bowl, set aside
  3. Measure out 150g of peas in a bowl, set aside
  4. Get out the onion, garlic and pepper
    1. Deseed the pepper, chop into 1cm cubes
    2. Peel the garlic and crush
    3. Peel and rough chop the onion
    4. Set all of these aside together in a large bowl or on a plate.
  5. Halve the button mushrooms (which feels endless), and set aside in a large bowl. For ease of use, I just put the chilli powder and curry powder on top of the mushrooms I set aside, as they go in together later.
  6. Slice the chicken breasts into strips, 1cm wide.

Cooking

  1. Once boiling, tip the rice into the saucepan and boil for 10 mins. With 3 mins to go put the peas in as well. Drain with the colander and set aside.
  2. Whack some garlic oil into the wok over a medium heat.
  3. Add the chicken strips. Season with salt and pepper and then drizzle the honey over. Stir fry for 4-5 mins. Remove and set aside.
  4. Add some more garlic oil, and tip in onion, garlic and pepper. Fry 4-5 mins.
  5. Tip in the mushrooms with the powders. Combine them well, so that the mushrooms clearly go from white to orange-ish all over. For for 1 min.
  6. Tip in the rice, peas and the cooked chicken strips. Stir it in briefly before adding the soy sauce. Combine and cook for another 2-3 mins.
  7. Serve!

Reflections

This one is delightfully easy to do. Excepting the fact you need to cook the rice separately first, this is effectively a one pot dish that takes remarkably little effort and technical skill. Tastes great (even got a pleasant “Hmmm” from sous-chef Nik). Only worry from my point of view is that it might be a tad on the dry side, so feel free to put in a bit more soy sauce, maybe 5 tablespoons (instead of the 4 suggested by Mrs Berry).

I don’t think I’d ever serve it at a dinner party. It’d be a good one if a friend comes round last minute, as most of the ingredients are basics you’ll have around the place all the time (mushrooms being the exception, as they go off so quickly), and you will have a good portion left to reheat later.

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