Why It Works
- Starting with freshly cooked or well-chilled rice guarantees it won't clump up as you stir-fry it.
- Frying in batches compensates for the low heat output of Western stovetops.
Fried rice is like the hash of dinnertime. It's the easiest and tastiest way to cleanse your fridge of leftovers. A couple of weeks back, my fridge happened to be full of leftover sous vide pork tenderloin. It's also summer, which means that I have a near-endless supply of corn and shishito peppers in my fridge at all times (those two are fantastic partners in crime). Put it all together, and what do you get? This simple pork fried rice with charred corn and peppers.
- 2 cups cooked white rice (12 ounces; 350g) (see note)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons (40ml) vegetable or canola oil, divided
- 6 ounces (170g) fresh corn kernels, cut from 1 to 2 ears of corn
- 2 scallions, sliced, whites and greens reserved separately (1 ounce; 30g)
- 12 shishito peppers, thinly sliced, or 1 green bell pepper, finely diced (about 6 ounces; 170g)
- 6 ounces (170g) leftover roast pork or ham, finely diced
- 1 teaspoon (5ml) soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon (5ml) toasted sesame oil
- Kosher salt
- Ground white pepper
- 1 large egg
If using day-old rice, transfer to a medium bowl and break rice up into individual grains with your hands before proceeding. Heat 1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil in a large wok over high heat until smoking. Add half of rice and cook, stirring and tossing, until rice is pale brown and toasted and has a lightly chewy texture, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl. Repeat with another 1/2 tablespoon oil and remaining rice.
Return wok to heat and add 1/2 tablespoon oil. Add corn and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly charred on several surfaces, about 4 minutes. Transfer to bowl with rice and toss to combine.
Return all rice and corn to wok and press it up the sides, leaving a space in the middle. Add 1/2 tablespoon oil to the space. Add scallion whites, peppers, and pork and cook, stirring gently, until lightly softened and fragrant, about 1 minute. Toss with rice to combine. Add soy sauce and sesame oil and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and white pepper.
Push rice to the side of wok and add remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil. Break egg into oil and season with a little salt. Use a spatula to scramble egg, breaking it up into small bits. Toss egg and rice together.
Add scallion greens and toss to combine. Serve immediately.
For the best results, use Chinese-style medium-grain rice, jasmine rice, or sushi rice. Rice should either be cooked fresh, spread on a tray, and allowed to cool for five minutes, or, alternatively, transferred to a loosely covered container and refrigerated for at least 12 hours and up to three days.