This kim chi fried rice uses a more nutritious red rice than white rice. The added advantage is that you don't need day old rice in it too. Kim chi and pork belly add plenty of flavour to this luscious rice dish. And did I mention how easy it is to make?
By sheer coincidence, during high school two of my close friends were Russian. It's not like I went to a school that had a high proportion of Russian students. There were three in my year and two of them were close friends. It was during the last week of year 12 that Sasha turned to me and said, "Are your family from Japan? Or is it China?".
I looked at her slightly stunned and when I asked her what she meant she said, "Well I know you're from Asia somewhere (gesturing) but I don't know where." I didn't know how to take the statement as we were best friends. I guess life was simpler in high school and when you were from or your tribe was not such a big issue. I honestly don't believe that she cared either way. And maybe it never occurred to her to ask or find out.
I thought of Sasha when I was making this recipe. Because this is an "Asian" recipe. The rice is Thai and the flavours are from Korea. As with many of my recipes, it was prompted by a fridge clearing moment. I've had kim chi fried rice before and I love the spicy hit that it gets from the inclusion of gochujang and kim chi. Also from current reports, fermented foods are really in vogue. And it was when I had half a packet of Thai red rice right at the back of the fridge and a bit of leftover Korean pork belly that I decided to make this.
The beauty of fried rice is how easy it is. There is a little caveat though in that you need day old rice if you are using white rice. But with red rice, the texture is firmer and chewier so you can use freshly cooked red rice in fried rice. Like brown rice it is unpolished so it does take a bit longer to cook (but not quite as long as brown rice) but has more nutrients and minerals than refined white rice. I would say that this serves 2 but it could serve one it's that moreish!
So tell me Dear Reader, how often do you make quick meals? What sort of rice do you normally eat? Are you into fermented foods like kimchi and sauerkraut?
Easy Kim Chi Fried Rice!
An Original Recipe by Lorraine Elliott/Not Quite Nigella
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 8 minutes
Serves 1-2 people
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil (plus extra at the end)
- 2 cups cooked rice (I used Thai red cargo rice, if using white rice use day old rice)
- Oil for frying
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 1 onion, peeled and sliced
- 3/4 cup chopped kim chi
- 3 rashers Korean pork belly or bulgogi, sliced (you can also use bacon)
- 2 tablespoon gochujang whisked with 4 tablespoons hot water (use half the quantity if you don't like it too spicy)
- 2 tablespoons spring onions or chives
- Toasted sesame seeds
Step 1 - Add the sugar and sesame oil to the rice and mix. Set aside.
Step 2 - Add oil to a frying pan and fry the egg as a thin omelette. Turn over and cook on the other side and remove from pan. Slice into thin strips and set aside.
Step 3 - Add some more oil to the pan and fry the onion until translucent. Add the pork belly slices and then the kim chi and fry for about 30 seconds. Add the cooked, seasoned rice and pour over the gochujang liquid. Stir well coating the rice for 2-3 minutes until cooked through and seasoned all over. Add the egg back into the wok and then serve with spring onions and sesame seeds.