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Friday, January 20, 2012

Random Food Fridays - Fried Rice



When Mr. Dwayne and I were young marrieds, on a strict budget, this dish showed up in the weekly rotation quite often. Back in the 80's (don't worry, I won't hit you with my cane) we tried to keep our grocery bill under $25 per week. It was a lot easier back then! I can remember running to the store with my mother-in-law for milk and seeing her drop $40-$60 just to "pick up a few things" and I was shocked! Now, I am that lady. In fact, I no longer plan every meal for the week and I no longer buy only the food that is needed for the planned meals. I'm livin' large! I'm glad that conditions, whether it's a narrow budget or a farm box with mystery ingredients, have helped to push me towards creative activity.

This fried rice uses bacon, although you could also use diced ham with good results. Really, you could pretty much clean out your fridge on this one. I like the bacon because for a few skinny rashers, you get great tasting fat for stir frying the veg and you get those salty, crispy bits to enrich the flavor.

Fried Rice
3 cups cooked brown rice (1 cup dry, I used local short grain rice)
5 slices of thin bacon
1/2 cup diced onion
1 carrot, grated
1 rib of celery, sliced thin
1 cup frozen peas
2 eggs
About 2 tbsp. soy sauce
About 1/2 tsp. sesame oil

The rice can be cooked in advance and reheated for this. I find that leftover rice keeps its shape better.

In a large skillet, cook the bacon slices over medium high heat until most of the fat is rendered and it is crispy. Remove to a paper lined plate. Add the onion, carrot and celery to the bacon fat in the pan and saute for 2-3 minutes. Add the frozen peas and saute about 2 minutes more. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs and cook in another pan and set aside. When the veg is just tender-crisp, add the rice and toss. Sprinkle with soy sauce to taste. Sprinkle with sesame oil to taste. While the rice is heating, cut up the egg and bacon. When the rice is hot and seasoned to your liking, add the bacon and egg and toss to combine.

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