Saturday, December 6, 2008

Dinner tonight... Chicken Fried Rice with Bok Choy

For as long as I can remember, my mom has told me that when life gives you lemons, you need to make lemonade. Towards the end of making Thursday night's meal, I set aside some chicken and a couple of cups of jasmine rice. And so, Thursday night's less than spectacular meal (i.e. the proverbial lemons) turned into tonight's Chicken Fried Rice with Bok Choy (i.e. some pretty tasty proverbial lemonade), the second part to another two-parter Everyday Food recipe set.

In any case, it was very easy. First you beat an egg and pour it into a large frying pan over medium heat and let it cook until it sets, then remove it from the pan, roll it up and slice it, it'll make long strips that you'll eventually add back into the rice. Next, chop some bok choy, dice an onion, mince some garlic and saute it all in a little vegetable oil over medium-high. When the bok choy has softened (after 5 or so minutes), you add in the leftover rice and the leftover cooked chicken (shred it first), some rice vinegar, soy sauce and bottled ginger, stir everything together until it's all heated through (again, about 5 minutes), then add in the egg, give the whole thing another stir, and serve. Super easy!

A couple of notes: this was my first time cooking with bok choy. I was a little nervous about it -- I knew I'd eaten it in Chinese food in the past, but couldn't really recall if or how much I liked it. (Turns out that in this dish, anyway, it was great.) The recipe said to core and then chop it. As far as I can tell, "coring" it means to avoid using the stuff in the very center and make sure to cut the botton off of each stalk, the way you would with celery. Also, cooking the egg according to the directions yielded a really cool superthin omelet, almost crepe-like in its thinness. It made me thing that it might be fun to experiment with making eggs like that in the future and rolling stuff inside, such as proscuitto, blanched asparagus, etc. So many possibilities!

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