You are probably like 9jafoodie really? perfect? perfect is a strong word fah?! yes perfect! if there is one thing I can cook with both my eyes closed and one hand tied to the back, it is Nigerian Fried rice. I wasn’t really that obsessive about it until I started dating my husband.
You see hen, he is not the type to complain about anything, like NEVER. So you can imagine my surprise when he casually mentioned how much he detested improperly prepared fried rice, like to the point where he would rather starve. Ha! me I was just like ho really?… but in my head hen, I started thinking about the many ways to tighten my fried rice game. lol.
With the numerous techniques I picked up from our Asian cousins (who are the masters at fried rice between), I have my fried rice down to a science. You can go through feedback from people who have tried my coconut fried rice & basmati fried rice recipe. There are basic dos and don’t s for a perfect fried rice in my book, here they are:
1) Do season your boiled rice base or use broth; water doesn’t work
2) Don’t overcook your rice. This is the first step to a disastrous fried rice. If the rice is overcooked and mushy, please just remake it
3) Day old rice works best but it’s not a must. If you have a particular day you almost always make fried rice, make your parboiled rice a day before and store in the fridge
4) Season your vegetables while they are chopped and resting, it helps the overall flavour of the prepared rice
5) It’s okay to like your rice a little on the yellow/green side, however you don’t want an overpowering curry taste. Use turmeric for color and curry for flavor
Follow these suggestions and you will always prepare great fried rice.
The rice you use for the fried rice is just as important as the cook. I have been known to splurge a little on my rice. I have a trusted brand and I stick to it no matter the cost. Here is a handy water to rice ratio tip:
- basmati rice: 1 part rice to 1 1/4 parts liquid
- parboiled rice : 1 part rice to 2 parts liquid
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary (optional)
- 2 cubes maggi
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon white pepper (substitute other ground pepper)
- 2 teaspoon curry powder (divided)
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- Season chopped vegetables with some salt, maggi and pepper. Set aside
- Place a large pot (with a good fitting lid) on medium heat. Heat up one part of oil and add in onion rosemary and bay leaves. Stir-fry until onion is fragrant and translucent. Add in 1 part each of curry, thyme, 1 cube maggi and 1 teaspoon of salt. Stir.Add in 4 cups water (3 cups if using basmati rice). Cover the pot, increase heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Reduce the heat on the broth to low-medium add in the rice and stir. Cover the pot tightly. leave the rice to cook for 25 minutes (or 15 minutes if using basmati rice). Uncover the pot and spread the rice on a flat plate to cool
- Place another large pot on medium heat, add in the left over oil and heat slightly. Add mixed vegetables and left over seasoning. Stir fry for 2-3 minutes
- Combine the precooked rice and vegetables. Stir well to combine.Taste and adjust for seasoning as needed
- Your rice is ready to serve. Enjoy with some fried plantain and stewed meat or chicken