This recipe is the perfect use for day-old rice that’s chilling out in the fridge. Whereas the cơm chiên I grew up with included little dried shrimps (tôm khô), this recipe excludes them because I never did like their taste or texture. In their place I’ve added peas and carrots for bold colors and nutrients, of course.
- 4 cups cooked and chilled day-old rice
- 2 tablespoons butter or vegetable oil
- 1 egg, well beaten
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 cup of chopped carrots
- 4 links of Chinese sausage (lạp xưởng)
- Black pepper
- Fish Sauce (optional)
Prepare vegetables and sausage
Begin by setting out the peas on the counter to defrost. Slice the Chinese sausages into bite-sized pieces. I prefer to cut them at a slight bias, resulting in thin, but good-sized pieces. Next, coarsely chop the garlic cloves and set them aside. Lastly, chop the carrots into bite-sized pieces and lightly steam them in the microwave—carrots tend to take longer than the other ingredients to cook through.
Add about 2 teaspoons of oil or butter to a frying pan and swirl to coat the pan lightly. Add the beaten egg and tilt the pan to make a thin egg pancake. Cook until set, about 1 minute, and then turn it out onto a plate. Once it has cooled, roll up the egg pancake into a cylinder and cut it crosswise into thin ribbons with a knife.
Crumble the rice with your fingers to break up any big lumps.
Make fried rice
Add the remaining oil or butter to the pan along with the garlic and cook until sizzling and fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Scatter the sausage and carrots in the pan and cook, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the rice and cook, tossing now and then, until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes. I cook my rice a bit longer because I prefer it with crunchy clumps.
Add the fish sauce, salt and pepper to taste. Next, add peas to the rice and toss. Add the egg ribbons, and cook, tossing well, for 1 more minute. Serve hot or warm.