Thai-Style Fried Rice
For years I made a basic Chinese-style quick-fried rice with soy sauce and eggs. But when I learned to make Thai fried rice from cookbook author Jeffrey Alford, it blew my mind; and I’ve made that version ever since. The trick is not to make it all at once. If you are feeding a large group, get everything prepared and portioned out into servings before you start cooking. Fry it in small batches unless you have a couple of woks and another pair of hands to work beside you. Pressing the meat, rice, and seasoning into the pan really builds the flavor. This is a great use for the leftover rice sitting in the fridge. Use whatever extra vegetables you have on hand in place of the bok choy.
- 1 fresh green chile, sliced, or chili paste or crushed red pepper flakes
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil or other vegetable oil (not olive oil)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced (1 tablespoon)
- 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
- 2 scallions (both white and green parts), minced (about 3 tablespoons)
- 3 ounces boneless pork, such as shoulder or loin, cut into 2 x 1/2-inch strips
- 1 cup shredded bok choy or other similar green vegetable
- 1 1/2 cups cooked jasmine or basmati rice
- Sprigs of fresh cilantro, for garnish
- 1/2 cucumber, peeled and cubed
- 1 or 2 fresh lime wedges for garnish
- Combine the chile and 2 tablespoons of the fish sauce in a small dipping bowl. Set aside. Heat a well-seasoned wok or frying pan over high heat. Add the oil and almost immediately add the garlic, ginger, and 2 tablespoons of scallions. Stir constantly for about 40 seconds. Be careful not to burn the mixture. Add the pork and continue to stir for 3 minutes, or until the pork is no longer pink.
- Stir in the bok choy and cook until it is just tender, a couple of minutes. Stir in the cooked rice. Add the remaining tablespoon of fish sauce and heat through, about 2 minutes.
- Serve immediately, garnish with cilantro, cucumber, the remaining tablespoon of scallion, and the lime. Serve the dipping sauce on the side.