Saturday, January 26, 2013

Kao Pad Moo / Thai Pork Fried-Rice

Growing up in Thailand, I’ve learned how to make fried-rice at a very young age, just like those who grown up here in the U.S. learned how to make sandwich at home, and please don’t be offended by what I just said.   I meant, I didn’t even know how to make sandwich until I came to the U.S. 12 years ago!  No joke! The hubby was even laughing at me when I asked, “How do you make a sandwich?”

By all mean, the staple food of us South East Asia people is rice, especially in Thailand.   We eat rice with everything, every single day and every meal, except for dessert...well, we use rice to making dessert dishes,too.   I was taught to cook rice, both jasmine rice and sticky rice (famously eaten in the North and the North East of Thailand), since I was nine...maybe, every morning before doing anything else.  Other meat dishes that could be eaten with rice were planned later and that because the rice must come first!
And when we have a lot of rice leftovers, we make fried-rice.  And that means, every youngsters must learn how to make fried-rice!  The basic ingredients of Thai fried-rice I was taught at home have oil, garlic, and onion, either fish sauce or soy sauce or dark soy sauce, sugar, egg, and rice, of course.  No meat?   Not necessarily.  Other fancy stuffs like in the restaurants we learned how to add into it later.   Just like many Thai dishes, everything can transform into a delicious dish easy if you just use your imagination.  So, don’t be surprised if you travel to Thailand and see dishes that you don’t even know or see before, you have to be brave and try new things that might, at the end, surprise you.   Just like Bizarre Food host Andrew Zimmern says, “If it looks good, eat it!”

So, what is the difference between Thai fried-rice and Chinese fried-rice? The answer is tomato and Chinese broccoli. At Thai restaurants here in the U.S. would sometime skip the Chinese broccoli, which exceptional, but not tomato.   So next time, if you ordered fired-rice at Thai restaurant and didn’t see chopped tomato in it, don’t be afraid to ask, where’s tomato?

Personally, I like tomato in fried-rice because it gives a little unique sweet taste of tomato to the dish. Therefore, Thai fried-rice is usually served with fish sauce mixed with lime juice load with thinly sliced of Thai chili plus lime wedge and cucumber slices to balance out the palate, and sometime would come with fried egg, which is optional. 

Like I said earlier, other fancy stuffs we add into it later. You choose you own protein and veggies to be added to the dish but don’t forget the rice though, otherwise, you’d end up with meat and veggies stir-fry and not the fried-rice.

What you need:   for 2 servings

2 cups cooked rice
6 oz. pork meat, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 of white or yellow onion, thin sliced or chopped
1/4 cup carrot cut into small cubes
2 eggs 
1 medium Roma tomato chopped
1 tsp sugar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 cup Chinese broccoli or bok choy – optional
A dash of ground white pepper
3 tbsp canola oil


5 green and red Thai chilies, thinly chopped 
1 tbsp fish sauce 
1/2 tbsp fresh squeeze lime juice 

: mix those three ingredients together and set aside


To be served with:
Lime wedges 
Cilantro leaves or chopped scallions for garnish 
Cucumber slices – optional 

How to: 

- Add 2 tbsp canola oil into a large sauté pan or wok over high heat
- Add minced garlic and fried until it fragrant and then add pork meat and cook for 3-5 minutes or until the meat cooked through
- Add chopped carrot and onion, cook until they are wilted, and then add rice
- Seasoning with sugar and soy sauce stir to combine well
- Push the fried rice to the side of the pan and then add 1 tbsp canola oil into a pan
- Crack 2 eggs into the pan and make quick scramble, and then stir in the fried rice to mix well
- Add Chinese broccoli or bok choy (if used), stir to cook until the vegetables are wilted
- Add chopped tomato and a dash of ground white pepper, turn off the heat - Serve immediately with chili, fish sauce and lime mixture, lime wedge and sliced cucumber, and garnish with cilantro leaves or chopped scallions


1 comment:

  1. Thank you very much - looks lovely


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