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June 27, 2017

HAM AND EGG UNFRIED RICE

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You don't have to rely on day-old rice to make a great fried rice. This unfried method uses uncooked rice, eliminating the need to plan ahead. Plus, it doesn't require the constant watch and stirring as the traditional method. Now, who doesn't love that? 

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Have you ever wanted to make fried rice but didn't because you didn't have any day-old rice in the house? I have! In those instances, I had to resort to plan B for dinner. That is until I decided to come up with a fried rice recipe that uses uncooked rice.

Using left over rice can be a hassle. I don't know about you, but my day-old white rice tends to be clumpy, and breaking it up can get a little messy. However, when the rice is cooked fresh, along with the other ingredients this problem is eliminated.



While we are on the subject of using day-old rice. I love cooking shows, but I aways chuckle when they add their perfectly separated, fluffy, day-old rice straight from the container to the frying pan. That does not happen in real life...mine at least.

As I mentioned earlier, the unfried method is easier than the traditional method. The rice and onion are cooked first in simmering seasoned water, then the remaining ingredients are added towards the end. No need to constantly stir ingredients, or to break up the rice. It comes out perfectly cooked—the key is the rice to water ratio, which must be at 1:1.5 and no more.


What I am sharing today is a recipe for Ham and Egg Unfried Rice, but you can substitute with any other kind of meat you want. This is an ideal opportunity to use up leftover meat—pork, chicken, steak, shrimp, whatever floats your boat. If you want to go vegetarian, use tofu or a meat substitute product. Or omit the protein component entirely. It's all good!!

For the ham and egg version, everything (except eggs) is cooked in the saucepan. Of course, you can omit the eggs altogether. The rice is scrumptious without it. I love eggs in my fried rice, so I like to take the extra few minutes to whip some up in a skillet.



I like to make this dish in my rice cooker because it is low maintenance and practically foolproof. Since not everyone owns one, I opted to share my stovetop method with you. Just follow the instructions and it will turn out great!

Although this is not a 30 minute meal, it is pretty close to it, making this rice dish perfect for a busy weeknight. The dish is substantial enough to stand on its own as a meal, but it also a fantastic side dish. This recipe makes 4 meal size servings or 6 sides.


Helpful tips:
  • A non-stick saucepan with  deep sides and tight fitting lid works best.
  • To best utilize time: chop onions and measure out rice before boiling water as it takes 2 minutes come to a boil. You would want to work quickly once it does.
  • Dice the ham and chop the scallion while the rice cooks.
  • Cook the eggs while the finished rice rests on the stovetop.
  • If using a rice cooker: cook rice, onion, seasoning, and water first; add corn, peas, ham, and scallion the last 7-8 minutes.






 
HAM AND EGG UNFRIED RICE



INGREDIENTS:

1 1/4 cup chopped onion
2 1/4 cups water
1 1/2 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce
1 1/2 tbsp. sesame oil
3/4 tsp. ginger powder
1 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/4 tsp. onion powder
1 rounded tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 1/2 cup uncooked rice
2 cups (about 10 oz) cooked ham, cut to 1/2 thickness and diced
1/2 cup chopped scallion, greens only
1/2 rounded cup frozen corn
1/2 rounded cup frozen peas

For the eggs (optional):
4 eggs
3 tbsp. water
a pinch of salt and pepper
1 tbsp. vegetable oil



INSTRUCTIONS:

Add 2 1/4 cups water to a medium non-stick saucepan with a tight fitting lid. Add soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger powder, onion powder, salt and black pepper. Cover and bring to a boil on high heat. Reduce heat to low. Immediately stir in rice and onions. Cover and cook for 14 minutes. The liquid should be simmering—bubbling without boiling over. Adjust heat slightly, if needed to get it to simmer.

After 14 minutes, quickly add the corn, peas, ham, and scallion. Close the lid. Increase the heat to high for about 1 minute to bring the pan back to temp. Turn the heat back down to low. Cook for 5 additional minutes.

Shut of the heat. Remove the lid and stir. Allow the rice to rest for 5 minutes, uncovered, to allow the moisture to evaporate.

While rice rests, cook eggs: Preheat a large skillet to medium-medium high. Whisk eggs, water, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Add oil to skillet. Add egg mixture. Once the bottom of the eggs firms up, score eggs with the spatula to divide into four sections. Flip over each section. Once the second side begins to firm, remove from heat. Chop up into small pieces using a rubber spatula. Add to rice. Serve.

Makes 4 meal size servings or 6 sides.






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8 comments:

  1. I'm with you, day old rice kind of sucks. It always gets too mushy for me after I recook it too. Your unfried rice looks like the bomb! I could eat that whole bowl right now (and I just eat dinner) :)

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    1. Cooking the rice with everything else makes the whole process so much easier and you don't have to babysit it like you do using the traditional method. Letting it rest uncovered after cooking take the mush factor out of the equation. So glad you like this, Karrie!

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  2. Yeah, I'm not a fan of day old rice, but I'd happily eat and love your unfried rice. Perfect quick meal!

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    1. I usually use my hands to break up the day old rice to make fried rice. It gets sticky and messy. I'm all to happy to bypass that step with this untried method. I'm glad you approve, Liz!

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  3. This is brilliant! I always make a small batch of rice so I don't have leftovers because I always have issues with day-old rice. I need to try this asap! Happy Friday!

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    1. Thanks Kelsie!! Using fresh cooked rice is so much easier. It does not require the babysitting like the traditional method. I hope you try it! :)

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  4. Very, very interesting. This reminds me much of how I make Mexican rice.
    I'm definitely trying your recipe. Two reasons:
    1) There is no such thing as leftover rice in my house. Even when I try to make extra, it somehow disappears. Rice monsters.
    2) My fried rice leaves something to be desired. I don't make it often, but when I do I'm just not happy with it. It's definitely missing something. It's time for a fried (or unfried) rice intervention :D

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    Replies
    1. How nice that you have rice monsters—I could use some from time to time! I hope you give this method a try, and I'd be curious to find you if you are happy with the result!

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