Posts tagged ‘chinese’

November 25, 2010

The secret to fabulous fried rice:

Can I even call it a secret? I’ve probably only ever made fried rice twice in my life.

But I’ve eaten plenty. And I use to watch my mother make it all the time. So that counts, right?

Here’s some general tips and tricks:

  • use old left over rice. nobody likes soggy fried rice and that’s what you tend to end up with if you use fresh steamed. so you know that take out box full of hard, kernel-y left over rice you have in the back of your fridge? use it.
  • i dig a little whole in the center of the pan once i’m done frying the rice and pour the egg straight in. 1) because i’m lazy 2) because it coats the rice in lots of egg. makes for a more homogenous result.
  • do the same with green onion at the end. make a hole, add some oil, fry the minced green onion. mmm… smells good. then mix.
  • use salt instead of soy sauce. i like my flavors to come from my ingredients. not from a cup of soy sauce.
  • top with japanese sushi seasoning. this stuff is magical! i like the kind of pork sung in it.

terrible image, i know. you wanna buy me a camera?

anyway. if you don’t like it plain with just eggs and green onion (which is how my mother makes it most of the time) any sort of left over meat can be mixed in. i’m partial to salmon fried rice. i’ll even take away half your grilled salmon dinner and save it for my fried rice tomorrow and let you go hungry for the evening.

really. i will.

if you want an actual recipe, look it up online. the world wide web doesn’t need more How To’s on fried rice.

October 18, 2010

Minced Pork and Green Onion Scramble

I was hungry so i didn’t bother to keep the egg whole. when my mother makes this dish (and she has often throughout my childhood), it always comes out perfectly golden and whole. don’t know how she does it. it cooks so much faster when i just scramble it. and because i forgot to pack an afternoon snack today, i took as many short cuts to get this off the stove and into my belly as i could.

oh. and a general disclaimer that i probably should’ve stated about 20 posts back: i don’t measure.

i don’t believe in measuring cups and little spoons. this is why i can’t bake to save my life. all of my recipes are approximations. has the phrase “salt to taste” fallen out of favor or what? i hate it when people review recipes and give it 2 stars because it was “bland”. dude. add salt. do you not taste your food when you cook it? if it’s bland, it’s your fault. yeesh.

enough bitching. here’s dinner:

(told you it wasn’t pretty. i got the “golden” part down, but not quite the “whole”…)


  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 lb? 1/2lb? ground pork… a little less than 2 fist sizes
  • 3 green onions, minced
  • 3-4 capfuls of soy sauce*
  • 1 tsp sesame oil.
  • salt

*i pour soy sauce directly into the cap of the bottle, then in a circular motion around what i’m seasoning. easier to control how much goes in. otherwise you tip the bottle a littttle too far and out comes a whole cup of soy sauce. great way to fuck up good food. i learned the hard way. many times.


  1. mix soy sauce and sesame oil evenly into ground pork
  2. in a large bowl, beat 4 eggs. add minced green onions. set aside.*
  3. heat wok, (when stir frying, always heat on high until smoking) add a tsp or so of oil, dump in pork and use edge of spatula to break up the pieces as much as you can. once the meat is browned and cooked through, scrape it out of the pan and into the egg mixture.
  4. salt the eggs, mix thoroughly, pour back into still-hot pan. **
  5. once edges of egg mixture begins to lighten/cook, flip over to other side. tip: cut into four pieces and turn each one individually.
  6. remove from heat when center is still a little bit runny. you don’t want it too look fully cooked in the pan or it’ll be dry and overcooked on the plate.
  7. eat.

*according to my hero, Alton Brown, salting eggs before cooking denatures the proteins and makes for a watery, rubbery scramble. Mother Chen has been salting her eggs pre-cooking for 30 years and never has she plated anything watery or rubbery. i think i’ll have to go with my mother on this one. i’ll take my chances with science for the sake of evenly seasoned eggs.

** something else my mom taught me: you can salt to taste raw egg. just dunk your chopsticks into it, taste, and spit it out. (“chopticks?” you say? yea. i don’t know how to beat eggs any other way.)

October 13, 2010

Shrimp and Edamame Stir Fry: 毛豆蝦仁!

my first attempt at recreating my favorite thing to order at chinese restaurants 😀

nothing like a good protein packed meal after a hard work out. GRRR. (<– that’s me making tough sounds. scary, no?)


  • 1/3 lb shrimp, shelled and deveined.
  • ~ 10oz shelled frozen edamame
  • 2 tbs rice wine
  • 2 tbs corn starch
  • garlic salt
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1-2 stalks of green onion


  1. dissolve ~ 1/2 tbs corn starch and a pinch of salt in rice wine. toss and mix shrimp.
  2. in a small sauce pot, boil water.
  3. heat wok. add tbs of oil. stir fry shrimp until no longer translucent (~5 min). don’t cook all the way! overcooked shrimp = crap. remove from heat into bowl you marinated it in.
  4. when water boils, cook edamame as per instructions (2-3 min)
  5. dissolve rest of corn starch in a small bowl with chicken broth. set aside.
  6. drain edamame. add to wok. dump in shrimp.
  7. pour in broth. mix until sauce thickens. (2 min) season with garlic salt to taste.
  8. toss in green onions.
  9. remove from heat and serve.

October 10, 2010

Snow Pea and Scallop Stir Fry

I love how quick and easy stir frys are. It’s a lazy person’s dream, really. (Or, as I like to tell myself, not lazy, just busy.)

You can prep all your ingredients way ahead of time, and the actual cooking takes about 5 min. No wonder the majority of my contribution in the kitchen growing up was chopping vegetables for my mother . It’s 75% of the work! I always asked her when she was gonna teach me how to cook for REAL. It’s been almost 20 years and I’ve finally learned: If you cant work a knife, don’t bother at the stove.

Yea whatever. I’ve served my time. I had Steph to julienne my veggies for me today.


  • 1/2 carrot
  • 1/4 lb mini scallops
  • a handful of snow peas
  • garlic salt (i was too lazy to mince garlic)
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth/water
  • 1 tsp garlic chili sauce
  • 2 tbs rice wine
  • 1/2 tbs cornstarch


  1. julienne carrots and snow peas.
  2. rinse scallops, dry off with paper towels
  3. dissolve cornstarch in rice wine and coat scallops evenly
  4. heat oil in wok on high, quickly saute scallops and remove from heat (don’t cook all the way through.)
  5. add veggies, garlic salt, just a BIT of broth for some moisture and saute 2 min.
  6. reintroduce scallops to wok and stir in chili sauce.
  7. remove from heat and serve!

    lunch for tomorrow? done.

    easy pea-sy.