Since moving into our new house, we have been dealing with a broken oven. The first time I turned it on, it was our second night in the house and I waited and waited for it to heat up which it never did. I then, in a bit of a panic, realised just how much I actually relied on the oven.
I bake alot. Not just cupcakes, but many of my regular weeknight meals are made in the oven as well. As I waited for a new oven to be installed, I began going through my repertoire looking for easy meals that could be made with just the stovetop, with particular focus on those that would provide leftovers.
That is where this fried rice comes in, it is a staple in my kitchen. It is so easy and quick to make that it sits pretty high in my meal rotation even when I have a working oven! I love that I can come home from work and with minimal effort have this prepared and served in such a short period of time. It also makes heaps so it is a cheap option for lunch through the week.
I have wanted to start doing some bulk meals on a Sunday so I felt more prepared for the week ahead. I love having food ready to go in the fridge or freezer as it just makes evenings less stressful. Apart from this fried rice, I also made a batch of this Taco Spice Slow-Cooker Chilli over the weekend, which was really delicious and made so much that we will have plenty leftover to freeze for when we need another quick and hearty meal.
I do eat a lot of rice as it is just so easy thanks to the magic of my rice cooker. This little appliance cost me $11 from Kmart many years ago and I would be totally lost without it! Once when I couldn’t find the lid, I tried cooking rice in the microwave…let’s just say thankfully I did eventually find the lid as the microwave effort was a disaster!
Thanks to its long shelf life and versatility, I can be sure I always have rice on hand in my pantry. That is really how this fried rice came about. It is the cheap meal that uses ingredients I normally already have ready to go. It started with me mixing any meat and vegetables I had on hand with rice and soy sauce as a budget meal when I was at uni. I have refined it a little but the premise is still the same. Simple, cheap and delicious, what more can you want from a weeknight meal?
Did I mention bacon? You want to use the streaky stuff. Lots of fat, but full of flavour. It takes the fried rice to the next level. You can of course use any bacon, but I very strongly advise you to use the streaky variety. The best I have found comes specifically from the deli in Coles.
Preparation is key to this dish. Prep your ingredients first then add them all together in a hot wok. You can use a large frying pan if you do not have a wok, but I would encourage you to get one as they really do help with the flavour. I have had mine now for 9 years and use it at least once if not twice a week, however I am thinking of upgrading soon to a bigger size. I generally put the rice on in the rice cooker just after I get home so it is done by the time I start making dinner and then just keep it on the warm setting while I prep the other elements.
Everyone has their own fried rice recipe but this is really the only one you will ever need. Adjust it, change it and use what you have on hand, but use this recipe as your base. Fried rice really is a simple and easy to make dish, but I think it is one that I think everyone should have in their repertoire.
Oh, and the good news? Our new oven got installed today!
- 2 cups white rice
- 500gms chicken thigh
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 eggs
- 6 rashers streaky bacon (about 300gms)
- 2 cups frozen veg (diced peas carrot corn)
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- Cook rice in rice cooker according to instructions.
- While the rice is cooking, dice chicken and mix with 2 tablespoons soy sauce and crushed garlic. Set aside.
- Make the omelette. Heat a non-stick frying pan on high and spray with oil. Whisk 2 eggs with 2 tablespoons of water. Add to hot pan and ensure egg mixture spreads evenly to the edges. Turn down heat slightly and cook for a few minutes until the top is set. Carefully turn omelette over to ensure all egg is cooked. Remove from pan and slice into small pieces. Set aside.
- Dice bacon and add to same frying pan that you just cooked the omelette in. Cook until crispy then remove from pan and drain on paper towel.
- In a large wok, heat 1 tablespoon oil and stir fry chicken until cooked through. Add frozen vegetables.
- Once the veggies are soft, add cooked bacon, egg and rice into the wok. Add remaining soy sauce and mix for another 5 minutes until rice starts to colour and everything is combined.