[ Currently Eating: Bologna Sandwich ]
I know what you’re thinking. Bologna in FRIED RICE!? Hey, open up your mind a little. After all, what is fried rice anyhow but taking a kitchen sink of leftovers that includes rice and cooking it up in a wok? There are a billion ways to make fried rice and since I tend to have a lot of leftover rice all the time (Asian family, hehe) in the fridge, inevitably this type of meal appears on the table every other week or so.
Most types of Fried Rice feature one or more “main” ingredients such as beef, pork, chicken, fish or shrimp. When I’m in a hurry and don’t have time to defrost and prepare these types of meats, I reach for the old standby, lunchmeat. I’ve made fried rice with diced ham, cooked chicken, turkey lunchmeat, hot dogs, and of course bologna. It actually is not bad for a quick meal.
One of the keys with fried rice is NOT to cook it in a wok, unless you’ve got an extremely high powered stove and the metal wok “holder” that lets you get high temperatures. I think I saw this on TV once… basically if you can’t get the wok hot enough it doesn’t distribute the heat as well or something. I think a non-stick skillet actually works fine and is less messy.
The other issue I know is the type of rice. I actually like fried rice that almost tastes like a pilaf… in other words it’s more stuck together instead of individual grains. But you can do whatever you like. If you use American rice or Uncle Ben’s your rice will most likely be looser than if you use Japanese sticky rice which is what’s in my cupboard.
It’s also difficult to make fried rice with “new” rice straight out of the pot. I always use leftover rice (a big hint is to break up refrigerated rice prior to putting it in the pan!), but I think if you must use hot rice then you should cool it first by spreading it out on a cookie sheet and maybe popping it in the freezer or something…
By the way, since I stress leftover rice I’m going to call it free for the purposes of this recipe. See, leftovers are good!
Bologna Fried Rice
Leftover rice, about 2-3 cups (free)
Bologna (3 slices of $2.50 pack) — $0.30
1 egg (from $1.50 dozen) — $0.12
1/4 brown onion, chopped — $0.15
1/4 red bell pepper, chopped — $0.12
1/2 pkg chinese mustard greens — $0.12
1 green onion stalk (from $.40 bunch) — $0.05
1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and sliced — $0.05
Vegetable Oil (1 tbsp of bottle) — $0.05
Soy sauce (1.5 tbsp of gallon can) — $0.05
Fish sauce (1 tsp of $1.00 bottle) — $0.05
Sesame Oil (1 tbsp of bottle) — $0.07
Sriracha or Hot Sauce (1/2 tsp) — $0.05
Chicken stock (2 tbsp) — $0.03
Salt / pepper — negligible
Note you can easily omit any number of the wet ingredients if they aren’t available. Also for drier rice, use less chicken stock and a little more salt.
Mix soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil, sriracha, and chicken stock together in small bowl and set aside. Beat egg lightly in a bowl and add a pinch of salt. Chop up bologna and mustard greens.
Heat a large skillet for a few minutes on high heat. Add vegetable oil and fry bologna for 1 minute. Add egg and stir briskly with wooden spoon to make something like scrambled eggs. Add brown onion, red pepper, chinese mustard greens, and jalapeno. Stir fry this for at least 2 minutes, add a touch more oil if needed.
Add rice to pan and stir to combine ingredients. I like the texture of somewhat “crunchy” toasted rice so when combined I leave it sitting there spread out in the pan without stirring for a minute or so. Then I continue cooking for about 3 minutes.
Add the wet ingredients to the pan. I like to make a little well in the center of the pan and pour it right directly on the pan… I feel it stops the rice from becoming too wet. Mix the rice well and cook for another 3 minutes. If you like you can leave it sitting there to get some further crunch. Off heat add black pepper and salt to taste and serve while hot!
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