Sunday, November 6, 2011

Something From Nothing ~ Week 4

Well, although recently beset by a head cold the size of Mount Rushmore, I was able to complete the work week (ok, OK...I took ONE sick day!), and head into the weekend filled with anticipation of the treats that I would be cooking. I mistook free time for "renewed energy", however, and have spent a large portion of the weekend recuperating. 

Fast forward to Sunday ~ around brunch time, and since I had bounced back well enough to clean house and rake leaves, etc., I figured I deserved a little treat. As you know, I detest most traditional breakfast-type foods, and consider them overly sweet, and too filling. So, long story short, around eleven in the morning I spotted this lonely container in the fridge.

If my memory serves me right, the Japanese word for rice is "Gohan", which I'm told literally translates to "honorable food". Now, far be it for me to waste something that a large portion of our planet uses to survive on.  What to do?  Well, to be honest, other than soup, I've never had a really good use for leftover rice until recent years.  I love fried rice, but could never really make it well ~ that is, until I stumbled upon Rachael Ray's easy, quick and tasty version of it.  Click here for the recipe.  Luckily enough, a quick search of the Pixie~Pantry and refrigerator yielded the following...

Clockwise from upper left; soy sauce, vegetable oil, frozen peas, carrot, scallion, bell pepper, egg, ginger, garlic.

You can now be great at making fried rice, too. I make this all the time lately, it's quick and delicious, and makes me feel wonderful about using up the leftover rice.  First, a little (and I mean less than 7 minutes to do all this) prep.  Beat the egg, mince the garlic and ginger, grate a carrot, and slice the scallion thinly. Dice the bell pepper pretty small, and get all ready to roll. It's a stir-fry, and will go quickly, so be ready!

Now, heat your oil until it's almost smoking hot, and throw all the veggies, along with the garlic and ginger into the pan, and begin to stir-fry, moving everything quickly, so that it does not burn.

Stir-fry until getting tender, but still retaining its bright color, and texture...about 3 to 4 minutes...

Then, empty the rice out onto the vegetables, and incorporate by stir-frying it all together...

Look what a beautiful a dish we are making!

Now, push everything to one side, and dump in your beaten egg...working quickly, scramble it up, and mix into the rice and vegetable mixture...

When the egg is scrambled, and mixed in with the rest of the vegetable-rice mixture, pour in soy sauce to taste. I used about a Tablespoon, and wished that I had used less, as I like mine a little lighter in color - but such is cooking.

Use your imagination on this dish - got a can of bamboo shoots? Use it! Do you have a vegetable that you love, but is going bad quickly? Use it!  The results?

I am in LOVE! What a great use-up this dish is. Please try it ~ you will feel so proud of yourself for not wasting, and for creating ........... something from nothing! Of course!  I went to go find Kitchen Angel, just to show her my work, ....and where was she?

Canoodling with her new-found State-Fair friend, Blackie! Are those my flowers she's feeding him?!!

Eat well, my friends, and stay tuned for week 5, and a pre-Thanksgiving feast! Love and kindness to all,