Chicken Fried Rice

Chicken Fried Rice
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Real Chicken Fried Rice just like the restaurants. Make this in big batches and freeze and have Fried Rice any time you want.

One of my first jobs was at a Chinese restaurant as a dishwasher. I use to love it cause he would always give me a free meal. Most times it was Sweet & Sour Chicken Balls, Chicken Fried Rice, Chicken Chop Suey, and Honey Garlic Ribs.

Sometimes though the nephew would bring in specialties like crab and we would eat whatever he wanted to serve up. This guy was so fast with his knife I would watch in amazement.

I one day I asked my boss why he always had freshly steamed rice on the go. He would sometimes empty a full container of freshly steamed rice throw it in a bucket and place it in the fridge, then make a new batch. He replied, Steamed rice has to be made fresh. In which I asked what do you do with the rice in the fridge. He said Chicken Fried Rice. I asked why. He explained to me what I’m about to explain to you.

Instead of wasting steamed rice. Store the rice to be used for later. This has the effect of drying out the rice. Which is exactly what you want for fantastic fried rice. It needs to be able to hold up against the Wok at the same time being dry so it can absorb soy sauce and still remain dry. That texture that everyone loves in fried rice is actually 1-3 days or even longer old rice.

Type of Rice

The type of rice is Jasmine. I use basmati since I always have this on hand. A medium to long grain but not short, these tend to be more glutinous. For sushi rice, this is desired, the shorter the better.

How to prepare Rice for Fried Rice

Wash the rice before cooking it to get rid of any excess starch attached to the rice. Keep doing this until the water runs clear. Then proceed with cooking it.

Cook it in a rice cooker and as soon as it is done. Dump into a baking tray to let cool. Once cooled place into a container and refrigerate for 1-3 days with a loose lid. Then check if it breaks apart easily. if not, mix it up and refrigerate longer until it does.

For us at home. Where we might not go through a lot or have periods where we go through Chicken Fried Rice. You can freeze it when it gets to the point of being ready. Giving you restaurant quality fried rice any time you want it.

Since this does take a while to dry out sometimes up to 3 days. Make it in large batches. I typically use 2 C of Basmati Rice to 3 1/2 C of water to 3 3/4 C of water and cook in the Rice Cooker. Of Course, you could make more, even doubling the amounts.

This is the main and the key point to good fried rice. It has to be dried day old or longer rice. After this everything else can be added as you please.

Cooking Chicken Fried Rice

To prepare, mix Soy Sauce with Old Rice until you get a good Color and set this aside. If you like dark fried rice then you can use dark soy sauce or mushroom soy sauce.

Add oil to the wok with some diced chicken and stir fry. The Chicken can be diced raw chicken or cooked chicken from leftovers. Next, you add aromatics and such, Garlic, Onions, Ginger, Carrots if desired, and some add-ins like scrambled eggs, Green Onions, Green Peas, etc… if you’d like.

Then add your rice. Cook this until the rice is heated through and Dry. You then season the rice.

You add Soy Sauce for 2 reasons. First for moisture and second for color. Added to the Rice first and set aside allows the Rice to absorb the Soy Sauce which means that the Add-Ins won’t get Colored by the Soy Sauce. This also adds salt to the Rice so be careful not to add too much especially if the rice seasoning contains salt as well.

Ingredients or Add Ins

The Ingredients can be anything you want. Typically you see Scrambled Eggs, Carrots, and Peas along with Onion and Garlic. But some restaurants may omit this using only Rice, Soy Sauce, Chicken, and Seasoning.

When making this at home you can add ingredients as desired like Bean Sprouts – which I really like a lot, Peppers, Celery, etc…

Chicken Fried Rice with Beansprouts
Chicken Fried Rice with Beansprouts

Seasoning

The Seasoning can be anything you prefer – Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Ginger powder, Chili Flakes.

My favorite to use is Magic Sarap All-in-one Seasoning, pictured below. Also, XO seasoning and MSG really elevates the rice.

Magic Sarap
Magic Sarap

If there are any leftovers you can freeze this as well and when ready to use again just bring up to temp in the wok over max heat.

Troubleshooting

The Rice before cooking should be dry enough that clumps are separated with ease when crumbled between your fingers.

When handling the rice you will get a chalky texture on your fingers. Soy Sauce is added to rehydrate the Rice sort to speak. The Rice Absorbs the Soy Sauce if given time to do so.

Stir fry over high heat until it is dry again.

  1. Rice is still clumpy and difficult to break apart
    The Rice is not dried out enough
  2. The Rice is too mushy
    Either the Rice is not dried out enough or the Rice was initially overcooked with too much water
  3. Rice is too dry
    There are a few reasons – not enough water when initially cooking the rice or too long of a dry time or overcooked.
  4. The Rice sticks to the pan when cooking
    Either the pan is not hot enough or the Wok is not seasoned well.
Chicken Fried Rice
Chicken Fried Rice

Chicken Fried Rice

Just like take out any time you want it. The longest part is the wait. You have to make up fresh Rice and then wait 1-3 days for it to dry out before making good quality Fried Rice.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Drying Time1 d
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Chicken Fried Rice, Fried Rice
Servings: 8 portions
Author: JAH

Equipment

  • Large Wok
  • Rice Cooker

Ingredients

Rice

  • 2 C Jasmine Rice or Basmati Rice
  • 3 1/2 C Water

Chicken Fried Rice

  • Chicken Breast – Diced Raw or Cooked
  • 2 Eggs – Lightly Scrambled
  • 1/4 C Green Peas – or more
  • 1/4 C Soy Sauce – or as needed and to achive good color
  • 2 cloves Garlic – Chopped fine
  • 2 stalks Green Onions or Chinese Chives

Cooking Oil

  • 2 Tbl Neutral Oil
  • 1 tsp Sesame Oil – optional

Rice Seasoning

  • 1 pack Maggi Season All – or 1 tsp Chicken Powder
  • 1/8 tsp White Pepper – to taste

Instructions

Rice Preparation

  • Wash and Rinse the Rice well and Place into Rice Cooker with Water and cook until Done. Dump the Rice unto a Baking Tray and let cool. Place into a large container partially covered and refrigerate when the rice is at room temp. The next day, see if the Rice clumps crumble and fall apart easily. If so the Rice is ready. If not it needs to dry more.
    Add Soy Sauce to the Rice once it is ready and let sit for a few minutes while you prepare everything else.

Preparation

  • Combine the Cooking Oils and set aside if using Sesame Oil else just set aside the oil.
    Combine the Rice Seasoning into a small bowl and set aside.
    Set the Chicken aside in a separate bowl.
    Prep and Combine all of the Vegetables into a bowl.
    Place the Eggs into another bowl and lightly scramble.
    Once you have the bowls set aside, place them close to you when you start cooking the rice.

Cooking Fried Rice

  • In a Wok on Max Heat, Add half the Oil. Add in your diced Chicken bits and toss around until almost done.
  • Add in your vegetables and stir fry for a few seconds.
    Add the Eggs and cook halfway before breaking it up and stir-frying. Add in remaining Oil and Rice. Constantly keep it moving, heating the Rice through and mixing until the rice cooks dry.
  • Add in rice seasonings and toss and turn again until mixed. Remove from heat once the Rice is heated through and Dry. Scoop out into a tray to either keep warm or serve immediately.

Notes

Other vegetables can be added such as Carrots, Onions, Ginger, Celery, Mushrooms, Diced Boy Choy, or Nappa Cabbage.
Other ingredients can be added to the Rice Seasoning such as Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Ginger Powder, Chili Flakes, White Pepper.
Add in XO, MSG, Hoisin Sauce, Oyster Sauce, Mushroom Soy Sauce, or other flavored Soy Sauce when adding in the Soy Sauce so that the rice can absorb it.
Try adding Bean Sprouts towards the end!
Try it with Diced Pork or Shrimp!