Rice was never something I was particularly excited about and there was one reason behind it: I had no idea how to cook it! A quick browse through Google reveals thousands upon thousands of methods of cooking it, yet I was always intimidated. Maybe, just maybe one rice cooking attempt which had me rinse the Gloopy Sticky Yucky Blob, Formerly Known as Rice in cold water to make it edible had something to do with that. After that shameful incident I just gave up (yes, I'm super patient) and decided that I shall never ever touch the stuff again. I'm not even sure what made me decide to give cooking rice another go, but let me just say I'm ecstatic (yes!) that I tried.
The recipe is from Delia's website: it is simple and works every.single.time. Incredibly proud of my newly acquired skill I decided to make a quick fried rice. The beautiful thing about this recipe is that it's incredibly versitile: I used mushrooms, bacon and prawns, but you can easily use chicken, peas, edameme, carrots, shredded cabbage; the possibilities are endless. I made a variation of this dish for my parents and friends when I was in Poland last week (this trip is my lame excuse for the temporary blogging hiatus) and they loved it. Funnily enough one of my friends confessed he doesn't even like rice only to come back for seconds (and scrape the pan, heheh).
To make 4 normal (or 3 very generous) portions you'll need:
5 rashers of streaky bacon, chopped into small pieces
1 pack (about 250g) mushrooms (I used chestnut mushrooms for their earthy flavour, but white mushrooms are equally good)
1 pack (about 230 g) prawns, frozen or fresh (I used frozen)
1 bunch of spring onions
1-2 garlic cloves
2-3 eggs, whisked
pinch of chilli flakes
sesame oil (optional)
oil, for frying
Start off by boiling water in the kettle. Now measure your rice: no weighing necessary! Just grab a small tea cup or a measuring jug (I use 1 American cup for 2 people and have leftovers for lunch! The American cup is about 240ml). You don't need to wash or rinse the rice. Put a big pot on the medium heat, add a glug of oil, then add the rice. Stir the rice so that every grain is covered with oil. Gently heat, then add hot water. The only thing to remember is 2 measures of water to 1 measure of rice. Easy peasy.
Once you've added hot water stir the rice to make sure no grains are stuck on the sides of the pot. Add a bit of salt or stock granules. Now cover the pot with the lid, turn the heat to medium-low and set your timer to 15 minutes. That's it. Don't sneak a peak, don't stir, just get on with the sauce.
Chop spring onions, bacon and mushrooms and mince garlic cloves.
Fry bacon, garlic and spring onions in a little bit of oil until bacon is crispy. Add mushrooms, chilli flakes, salt and pepper and keep frying. Finally add the prawns. If you're using frozen, there'll be a bit of liquid in the pan; keep frying everything until the water evaporates.
Add a bit of soy sauce at the end.
While your sauce is frying, grab a small frying pan, add a bit of oil and pour in the eggs. Fry them, stirring with a spatula, until you have dry scrambled eggs. Take off the heat and mix in with the rest of the sauce.
When your timer beeps (you're cooking rice, remember? ;) take the pot off the heat, take the lid of and cover the pot with a clean cloth. Leave for 10 minutes. The cloth will absorb all the extra moisture making the rice fluffy.
Once the rice is ready mix it with the sauce, add a bit of sesame oil or more soy sauce and munch away.