People often say that fried rice is a great dinner for using up lingering veggies in the fridge. To me it’s not exactly a spur of the moment solution since it does require leftover rice, and that’s not something we tend to have on a regular basis. It needs a teensy bit of forethought, but either way, I do love fried rice. It has long been a favorite of mine, ever since I was ordering it weekly from the super-cheap-but-still-fabulous Chinese place down the street from my freshman dorm. Most of the time I add shrimp and make it a main dish, but sometimes I like to throw in a bunch of different veggies. It makes a great side dish for Asian-inspired entrees. This version is simple and delicious, and our whole family loved it. Even Caroline gobbled it up!
3 tbsp. vegetable oil, divided
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup bean sprouts
3 green onions, chopped
4 cups cold cooked rice*
3 tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
½ tsp. salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the eggs. Cook, stirring until they are lightly scrambled but not dry. Transfer the eggs to a plate and set aside. Wipe out the pan and return to the heat.
Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan. Add the carrots and onion to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the veggies are slightly tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the peas, bean sprouts, and green onions. Cook briefly, about 1 minute. Add the rice to the pan and stir, breaking up the clumps. Stir in the soy sauce, salt, and pepper to taste. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until completely warmed through. Stir in the eggs. Serve immediately.
*Do not be tempted to try and use freshly cooked rice. You’ll end up with a gloppy mess, or so I’ve been told (and read many times). I tend to cook the rice in the morning while I’m eating breakfast and making my lunch so that it’s ready to go for dinner that night.