Recipe – Asian Rice with Deep-fried Egg

Asian Rice and Deep-fried Egg
We always want to eat well, but don’t always want to spend hours in a hot kitchen. That’s when throw-together-dishes. using whatever’s on hand, are more welcome than ever, which is exactly what this recipe is. It came about one evening when Muriel Chen from Blue Eye Dragon Taiwanese Restaurant gave me some pickled vegetables and deep-fried shallots that her mum, Jade, had made. It’s more a concept than a recipe and, as long as you have a few Asian staples in the pantry and fridge, you can make your own version. See the notes below for suggested variations and descriptions of the more unusual Ingredients. Last time I made this, we had a glass of vermentino with it from Victorian winery Billy Button, which, among other things, has a great range of Italian varietals. It worked a treat, enough body to handle the Asian flavours, but still bone dry.

Serves 2

Ingredients
  • 320g jasmine rice
  • 12 grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon gochujang chilli paste (see below)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons sliced Chinese pickled mustard greens (see below)
  • 2 tablespoons sliced kimchi (see below)
  • ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 green onions, finely sliced
  • ⅓ cup deep-fried shallots (see below)
  • 1 teaspoon nori komi furikake rice seasoning (see below)

You’ll find gochujang (Korean chilli paste), kimchi (Korean fermented cabbage), pickled mustard greens, fried shallots and furikake rice seasoning at Asian grocers and some delis.

Method
  1. Steam rice in a rice cooker or according to packet instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, place tomatoes in the bottom of 2 serving bowls.
  3. Divide the chilli paste, soy sauce, sesame oil, pickled mustard greens and kimchi between the bowls.
  4. When rice is cooked, heat oil in a small saucepan until quite hot.
  5. Meanwhile, divide rice between the bowls.
  6. Add 1 egg at a time to the oil and cook until white is set, carefully spooning some oil over the yolk to just encase it. Using a slotted spoon, transfer cooked egg to the top of the rice.
  7. When both eggs are cooked, drizzle the oil over the eggs and rice.
  8. Top with green onion, deep-fried shallots and rice seasoning and serve.
  9. Mix well before eating. 
Variations
  • I like the subtle heat of gochujang, but you can use sambal oelek or any other chilli.
  • You don’t need both pickled mustard greens and kimchi, just double the quantity of either one, use another Asian pickle, or leave them out altogether.
  • Deep-fried shallots add great crunch, freshly made are best but store-bought ones are a handy stand-by (check the best-before-date as they do go rancid, and store them in the fridge). To make deep-fried shallots: finely slice red shallots and deep-fry in vegetable oil until crisp and golden – the oil should be hot enough that they don’t go soggy but not too hot, as they need to cook for a few minutes to get an even golden colour; stir regularly so steam can escape and they stay crisp. Refrigerate leftovers for a week or two.
  • Furikake is a Japanese rice seasoning made from dried seaweed and sesame seeds, some versions also contain dried bonito so read the label, once you have it in the pantry you’ll put it on everything.
  • Add flaked smoked rainbow trout or shredded poached chicken breast for a non-vegetarian version if you like.

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