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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Pinoy Style Fried Rice (aka Garlic Fried Rice)

Garlic fried rice is the Filipino version of the traditional fried rice found in Chinese cuisine. No carrots. No peas or chicken. Just garlic and little bit of margarine and an optional scrambled egg mixed in.

This dish holds a very special place in my heart because it's the very first thing I ever learned how to cook. I was probably in the 4th or 5th grade then. Can you imagine a ten-year-old alone in the kitchen? And I wasn't making toast. Never had a home economics class either. It was from watching my mom cook this over and over that I learned to make it myself. I remember I wanted to surprise my her with a nice meal when she got home. I pretended that I had my own restaurant. On the menu was garlic fried rice and slices of pan-fried spam. (Filipinos love that spam!!) I remember printing out little menus and drawing fancy borders on them then putting it in a pee chee folder. My restaurant then was called J & J Restaurant. The other "J" being my mom. It's a simple dish and the Filipino way of comfort food.

The rice. No Asian household is without a rice cooker. It's a must and very essential. To cook rice over the stove, click here. I'd tell you myself, but I've never cooked it over on stove pot. Except maybe for Arroz Caldo. (Chicken Rice Soup) That will be for a future post.

If you've got left over white rice from your Chinese take-out, use that too. For the margarine in this recipe, I use Star Margarine. It's a product of the Philippines that's been around since the 1930s. I believe it's now sold in the Asian aisle of some super markets here in the US. Not just in the local Asian markets. It's really good on toasted pan de sal or sliced bread with sugar sprinkled over it. But you can use any margarine of you choosing.

The memories are flooding back. Now 15 years later, I'm still cooking it.

Garlic Fried Rice

1 Large Garlic cloves (sliced or minced)
3 c Cooked Rice (rough estimate)
2-3 Tbs Margarine
1 Tbs Oil (vegetable, olive or canola)
Salt to season
1 egg (beaten - optional)

Heat the oil in a large pan, pot or wok. Cook the garlic until they start to turn brown, then add in the rice. Toss constantly for a couple of minutes, then season with a little salt and add the margarine. Again tossing constantly

When the margarine has dissolved into the rice you can add the optional egg. Again toss for another minute or so or until egg is cooked, then serve.

If you feel like adding more garlic or margarine, go right ahead. You can eat this for breakfast (most Asian cultures eat fried rice for breakfast), lunch or dinner. Either alone, with a fried egg or a side dish of your choice. I usually like to eat this with a freshly diced tomato or my personal favorite some banana ketchup. More on that later. Yum!

Fried Rice on Foodista


Thistlemoon said...

That is so cool that this was the first dish you cooked - and for your mom! I bet she was super proud of you!

Anonymous said...

Just came across your blog. This dish looks so delicious! I have to try it!

Heather S-G said...

I love nostalgic (sp?) dishes! This one sounds awesome...mmmm, rice and garlic! Can't wait to hear about banana ketchup...I'm intrigued.

Sweta (My Indian Dietitian) said...

It'll be great to use my left-over rice this way!! BTW,most Indian homes also have a pressure cooker to cook rice and lentils!

The Duo Dishes said...

Great story you just shared. That's really sweet. This is also perfect to read about because we're hosting a potluck dinner, and our theme is filipino food, so we're looking for ideas. Thanks!

Christo Gonzales said...

this story is too friggin' cute! I am hugging all over you right now thats how cute it is...I would love for my 11 year old to make me something.....even toast!

Anonymous said...

Love the story behind the food. You have come a long way since that first meal but at the same time it's nice to see you know your roots.

thanks for sharing,


Jenn said...

Jenn: She was. Although, not to pleased with the clean-up. lol

angiesappetite: Thanks for visiting!

girlichef: Yes, banana'll love it.

Sweta: This is perfect for leftovers.

DuoDishes: Perfect timing!!

Doggy: Aww, thanks doggy! I'm sure your 11-year-old will make you something probably not now. Definitely someday.

eric: Thanks, Eric! I like to cook dishes I've been familiar with for a long time.

teresa said...

This looks SO good! Our family is crazy about rice, so they would go crazy for this.

Jen @ said...

Looks delicious - I like Chinese fried rice quite a bit, so this sounds wonderful!

Sippity Sup said...

I never imagined margarine could be a comfort food! Cool...GREG

chow and chatter said...

great dish and an adorable story your love of food goes way back so sweet, wish we could see a pic!!


Diana said...

My restaurant was called "Diana's Cafe." It was open for lunch and the menu featured items like grilled cheese and tuna fish sandwiches. Sometimes pancakes too! :)

Debbie said...

Garlic fried rice sounds great to have with anything....!

Claudia said...

Not only does the rice look wonderful, but the story behind it is so sweet. I love the meals you cook from your childhood.

Jenn said...

Teresa: your family will go crazy for this.

ValleyWriter: Thanks!

Jen: now you can try the Filipino version

Greg: LOL

Rebecca: unfortunately, no pic. It didn't cross my mind at the time.

Diana: Diana's Cafe. I like that. Thing kids come up with.

Debbie: it pretty much does go with anything.

Claudia: Childhood meals are always the best.

Screamin' Mama said... garlic...that looks delicious!

Astra Libris said...

Such a beautiful story! You mom must treasure the story also, I'm sure!

I'm so glad you introduced me to this wonderful recipe, because as soon as I read "no Asian household is without a rice cooker" I felt right at home - same thing in Southern Louisiana! :-) Cajun cooking must always include rice... and now I'm so excited to fix your recipe for our next meal!

Jenn said...

Screamin' Mama: Thanks!

Astra Libris: She does. As for the rice, I gotta have it.

Anonymous said...

The fried rice looks yummy with garlic! Excellent!

Pam said...

How cool that this was your first dish you cooked. It looks and sounds delicious.

Teanna said...

I love fried rice and I love garlic, so this dish and i were meant together! It looks amazing!

the wicked noodle said...

YUM!! I absolutely can't wait to make this, definitely with the egg!

Reeni said...

I love garlic-this sounds great! And your story is so sweet!

Jenn said...

Sophie: Thanks.

5 Star Foodie: Garlic makes everything good. =)

Pam: It'll forever remain with me.

Teanna: It was a match made in food heaven.

Wicked Noodle: the egg definitely adds to the texture.

Reeni: Thanks.

Anonymous said...

This looks great - I just love fried rice, and garlic.

Jenn said...

Anonymous: Thanks.

Tangled Noodle said...

I will need to cook up extra rice just to make this! I know what you mean about a Filipino kitchen not being complete w/o a rice cooker. However, I actually stopped using mine b/c it's just too big to use for 1 cup of rice. So it's stovetop rice for us (I also switched to Basmati from Thai jasmine and my mother is beyond scandalized!)

Jenn said...

Tangled Noodle: I believe there's small on cup rice cookers you can get. I know here in LA they have quite a bit in the asian markets. I always liked the taste and texture of basmati. said...

Hi Jenn, I SO love your blog!Try making your garlic fried rice with some white ground pepper,it's way even better :)Hope you wont mind but I'd love to guide Foodista readers to your site, just add this little widget here to this post and it's all set to go, Thanks!

Jenn said...

Alisa: Cool, thanks. Widget add. =)

Viagra Online said...

I hate garlic I'm not sure that this recipe will be a good idea in my cook book.

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