Monday, June 29, 2009

Shrimp Paste Fried Rice

I love shrimp paste.

I love shrimp paste.

I love shrimp paste.

And I think I've made my point. I'll get on with the rest of the post now.

Oh, and before I start:SHRIMP PASTE!

When I was young I used to hate shrimp paste. I blame it on the fact that my mother used it as liberally as any child would with Nutella.

Anyone who has ever come anywhere near shrimp paste would know that it was NEVER meant to be spread like Nutella. I think if it weren't for my rebellish side and my perchant to throw out anything I disliked in my lunchbox, my innards would have been well and truly cured by now.

Luckily I fell in love with shrimp paste fried rice, credits to the overabundance of Thai food around Sydney. Not that I'm complaining.

It's a wonderfully versatile dish, especially good if you're scratching your brains as to what to do with leftover rice. Or if you're like me, then you just deliberately cook to much rice the previous night so that you get an excuse to use the shrimp paste sitting in the fridge.

Apart from the day-old rice, the cast of characters involves eggs, spring onions and coriander.And any meat available (I sliced some braised pork belly that my father made, but could just use any sort of marinade meat).

And ginger. Just a little.And then some peas and corns.

And some diced pineapples. I love pineapples. If you have the fresh stuff, good for you. But I didn't, so I used canned. Forgive me.

Fry up the shrimp paste with a little oil and ginger until fragrant. Take a big whiff and enjoy the fishy goodness.

Some people would run a mile just to get away from this smell. Others would just get high off it. I think I belong in the latter category.

Add the rice and meat and give it a good toss around. Don't beat the rice up too much or you'll break the grains. If your meat is raw then cook the meat first before throwing it in.
Add the egg and peas, and give it a good toss around once again.

Don't start me on how real Asians don't add peas and corn in their fried rice. This is my cooking, I add what I like. Feel free to do it your own way. That's part of the joy of cooking!

Next add the pineapple. Feel free to caramelise it in another pan before adding it to the fried rice. I was in a rush so I skipped that part.

Please add pineapple. Shrimp paste and pineapples generate R rated results. Failproof.

Next, turn the heat down completely and throw in the coriander and spring onions and toss through. Turn off heat and serve.

Shoo! Now go make this and enjoy it!

Shrimp Paste Fried Rice
Serves: 1

2 Eggs
1/2 tsp Chicken Powder
5 sprigs Coriander, finely chopped
1/2 stalk Spring Onion, finely chopped
4 thin juliennes Ginger
1/4 cup frozen Peas and Corn
2 slices Pineapple, diced
1 tsp Shrimp Paste
1/4 cup Pork, chopped
1 bowl Leftover rice. (Just add however much you can eat)

  1. Beat eggs with chicken powder and fry in a pan until just cooked. Set aside.
  2. Grill or fry pineapple pieces until caramelised, set aside
  3. Add oil to pan and fry shrimp paste with ginger, until fragrant
  4. If you have raw pork, then add raw pork and fry until cooked. Otherwise add rice and cooked pork together and toss until rice is well coated with paste
  5. Add peas and corn and fried eggs and break up egg through the rice
  6. Add pineapple and toss through rice.
  7. Turn heat to low and add spring onions and coriander. Toss through and turn off heat.
  8. Serve in a bowl topped with more spring onions and coriander.
  9. Do yourself a favour and make yourself some pina colada while you're at it.
  10. Cheers.

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