Tag Archives: Asian

Pork Fried Rice (Remembering House of Rice)

There used to be an Asian shop in Seattle called House of Rice, located in the University District (the neighborhood surrounding the University of Washington).  House of Rice was on the south end of “The Ave“, a fun street filled with funky shops and restaurants.

The original handout from class (click to enlarge)

Soon after my family moved back to Seattle in the late 1970’s, my Mom took some Chinese cooking classes at House of Rice.  She learned how to make won tons, won ton soup, and fried rice, among other things.  Throughout my childhood she made these dishes on a regular basis, and my family still uses the fried rice recipe as our go-to recipe.  It’s been years since I’ve had the won tons, but they are so good (but time-consuming to make).

When I was in high school I had to take the city bus to get home in the afternoon.  One of the routes I took left me with a 20 – 30 minute wait in the University District.  I often made quick jaunts out to shops on The Ave, Tower Records being one of my favorite stops (back when it was filled with vinyl records and cassette tapes!).  Another of my favorite stops was House of Rice.  I loved looking at the exotic Chinese and Asian goods.  There were food items, dishes, cookware, and all sorts of other trinkets and decor.  When I was a little older and ready to buy my first wok, House of Rice is where I went.  Certain smells, particularly Chinese five spice powder, always take me back to that store!

All that remains of House of Rice now are memories and copies of those recipes.  I made the fried rice recently and was reminded of just how good it is.

Pork Fried Rice

Print Recipe

Have all the ingredients prepared before starting.

  • 1/2 oz. dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons peanut or canola oil
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup diced barbecued pork (about 4 oz.), purchased or homemade
  • 8 oz. bean sprouts, washed and drained
  • 4 – 6 cups cooled cooked rice
  • 4 – 6 green onions, white and green parts, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

To prepare the mushrooms, place them in a heat-proof bowl and pour boiling water over to cover.  Soak until mushrooms are soft, about 20 minutes.  Drain the mushrooms, remove the tough stem, and slice.

Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high to high heat.  When hot, add the beaten eggs and stir-fry until set.  Add the barbecued pork, mushrooms, and bean sprouts and stir-fry for an additional minute.  Add the rice to the wok or pan.  Break it apart with a spatula and stir-fry until rice is heated through, at least 5 minutes.  Add the green onions and soy sauce.  Stir to mix thoroughly.  Taste for salt; add salt or more soy sauce if needed.

Serves 4 – 6

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Chicken and Green Bean Stir-Fry with Coconut-Curry Sauce

A few years ago I received the book The Best 30-Minute Recipe as a gift.  My favorite thing in this book is their “Create-Your-Own Stir-Fry” recipe.  It’s basically a formula of how much meat or other protein and how many vegetables to use, by weight.  Then there are 5 different stir-fry sauces to choose from.  So you get to build your stir-fry inspired by what ingredients you have on hand or what’s fresh in the market.  There are also a handful of “fully built” recipes using this formula and some of the sauces.  I have made this stir-fry a number of times, with different meats, veggies and sauces.

In the Wok

In the Wok

This time I was inspired by some leftover coconut milk.  The Coconut-Curry Sauce was the perfect use for it.  I immediately knew I wanted to use chicken, and green beans sounded good too. Since this was a Thai-inspired sauce, I also included red bell peppers and a little basil.  The end result was delicious!  Flavorful, but not too spicy and the veggies were cooked perfectly.

Feel free to play around with the meats and veggies with this recipe.  If you don’t like bell peppers, use something else!  One note about the coconut milk:  my coconut milk was really thick (almost like a paste).  I ended up using a half cup of coconut milk and a half cup of chicken broth and it worked out great.  If you use light coconut milk you probably won’t have this problem.

Chicken and Green Bean Stir-Fry with Coconut-Curry Sauce

(printable recipe)

Coconut-Curry Sauce:

  • 1 cup coconut milk (or ½ cup coconut milk and ½ cup chicken broth if the milk is very thick)
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1-2 teaspoons red curry paste
  • 1 teaspoon light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch

Stir-Fry:

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 12 ounces green beans
  • 1 large red bell pepper, about a half pound
  • ½ red onion, about a quarter pound
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil

1. Mix the Coconut-Curry Sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.

2. Cut the chicken breast into bite-sized pieces.  Toss with the soy sauce.  Set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

Cut Veggies

Cut Veggies

3. Clean and trim the green beans.  Cut them into pieces about 1½ inches long.  Thinly slice the red bell pepper, and cut each slice in half.  Thinly slice the red onion.  Keep the vegetables separated as they will cook at different times.

4. Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a large skillet or wok over high heat.  When the oil is just smoking, add the chicken.  Cook and stir until cooked through and lightly browned.  Transfer chicken to a clean bowl.  Wipe out the pan.

5. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the pan and return it to high heat.  Add the green beans to the pan, along with a ¼ cup of water.  Cover and steam over high heat for 2 minutes.  Remove the lid.  Add the red bell peppers and red onions to the pan.  Cook, stirring often, until crisp-tender, 3 to 5 minutes.  Adjust the heat if the veggies are cooking too quickly or too slowly.

6.  Clear the center of the pan and add the remaining teaspoon of oil, the garlic, and the ginger.  Cook, stirring constantly, for about 30 seconds or until fragrant.  Stir in the cooked chicken.  Give the Coconut-Curry Sauce a stir and add it to the pan.  Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook until it has thickened, 1 to 2 minutes.  Add the sliced basil and give everything a good stir to coat it with the sauce.  Serve with white rice.

Serves 4

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Singapore fried rice noodles.

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I have always loved Asian-inspired noodle dishes.  If I ever get to travel anywhere in Asia, I will want to eat the real thing every day!

This dish comes from Asian Noodles: Deliciously Simple Dishes to Twirl, Slurp and Savor by Nina Simonds.  Everything I have made from this cookbook has been good, and this recipe was no exception.

I made the recipe as written, except I substituted pork tenderloin for one pound of medium shrimp.  The dish would have been more colorful with the shrimp, but not everyone in my family will eat shrimp.

We all enjoyed this dish.  Even though it was slightly spicy, my 6 year old daughter really seemed to like it.  Next time I would use a little less curry powder, or else try to find the “Madras” curry powder called for in the recipe.  The leftovers made a tasty lunch!

Singapore Fried Rice Noodles

(printable recipe)

  • 1 pound pork tenderloin

Marinade:

  • 2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine or sake
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder, preferably Madras
  • 3 1/2 cups finely shredded leeks
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
  • 3 cups bean sprouts, rinsed and drained
  • 6 oz. thin rice stick noodles, softened in hot water and drained

Cut the pork tenderloin crosswise into 1 1/2 inch pieces.  Cut each piece lengthwise into thin strips.

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In a medium bowl, mix together the Chinese rice wine, 2 teaspoons minced ginger, and 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil.  Add the pork strips to the marinade and toss to coat.

In another bowl, mix together the sauce ingredients and set aside.

Heat a wok or heavy skillet over high heat.  Add 2 tablespoons of the oil and heat until hot.  Add the pork, and stir-fry until cooked through, about 2 minutes.  Remove with a slotted spoon and drain in a colander.  Wipe out the wok.

Reheat the wok, add the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and heat until very hot.  Add the curry powder and stir-fry until fragrant, about 20 seconds.  Add the leeks and ginger and stir-fry until slightly limp.  Add the bean sprouts and cook for 20 seconds, then add the pork and rice noodles.  Give the sauce a stir and add it to the wok.  Toss gently until the noodles have absorbed the sauce and are tender.  Transfer to a platter and serve.

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