Asian, Healthy, Leftover Magic, Rice, Southern, Weeknight

Leftovers make great fried rice

February 4, 2015

How many times have you had leftover rice sitting in your fridge? For us here in south Louisiana, it’s a lot. Red beans and rice, crawfish étouffée, gumbo and other dishes can leave behind a surplus of perfectly cooked rice. But no matter where you live or what you cook, there’s no need to toss the rice that may be taking up space in your refrigerator. Combined with the roast chicken or grilled shrimp that are probably also lying in wait, those plump grains are easily converted into fried rice, a quick and convenient dish with great umami and rib-sticking flavor.

Red beans and rice on Monday? Turn your handiwork into a satisfying second round later in the week. And if you haven’t tried Cajun Country Rice from Crowley, LA, check it out. I interviewed owner Robbie Trahan for my book, Hungry for Louisiana. I love their medium grain!



Fried Rice
Serves 2-4

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 small onion, chopped (about ½ cup)
½ cup diced carrots
½ cup frozen green peas
2 cups cooked white or brown rice, preferably medium grain
1 cup cooked and diced chicken, pork or shrimp
2 eggs, gently beaten
¼ cup chicken or vegetable broth, optional
Scallions, green parts only, sliced thin for garnish

In a large heavy skillet, heat both oils to medium high. Sauté onion, carrots and peas about 5-7 minutes until onions and carrots are soft but not browned, and peas are thawed. Add cooked rice and meat/seafood. After all ingredients are blended and heated through, make a wide well in the bottom of the pan. Add the eggs, allowing them to firm up slightly like scrambled eggs. Break eggs apart with a wooden spoon and spread throughout the rice. If the mixture seems to dry, add a little stock to moisten. Serve immediately, topped with scallion slivers.


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