Christopher Kimball's Milk Street: Thai Fried Rice

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Fried Rice is not always fried rice...when it's inspired by local super-star chef, Andy Ricker! Matthew Card, Food Editor of Christopher Kimball's Milk Street, stopped by to share the recipe.

For more great recipes from Christopher Kimball's Milk Street, click here.

Thai Fried Rice

Start to finish: 20 minutes | Servings: 4

We liked the aromatic flavor of jasmine rice, but long-grain white or basmati works, too. A good Thai fish sauce was essential; at Milk Street we use Red Boat. Andy Ricker uses pork belly, but that can be hard to find in the U.S. Pancetta worked well as a substitute—it has the right amount of salt and fat. Plain bacon will do the job, too, but avoid smoked bacon.

Don’t use hot or warm rice. The fried rice will be clumpy and gummy.

—Diane Unger

  • 1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 4 cups cooked and chilled jasmine rice
  • 1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, chopped
  • 4 scallions, white and green parts thinly sliced, reserved separately
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ¼ cup minced fresh cilantro
  • Sliced cucumber and lime wedges, to serve

In a bowl, stir together the fish sauce, soy sauce, water and sugar. Set aside. Use your hands to break up the rice so no clumps remain. Set aside.

In a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high, heat the oil until just smoking. Pour in the eggs and cook, stirring, until just set. Transfer the eggs to a plate. Add the pancetta to the skillet and cook over medium until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to the plate with the eggs.

Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the skillet and return to medium-high heat. Add the scallion whites, shallot and garlic, then cook until softened, about 1 minute. Add the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 2 minutes.

Stir the fish sauce mixture, then pour over the rice. Cook, stirring, until well mixed. Stir in the pancetta and egg, breaking up the egg. Transfer to a large platter and sprinkle with cilantro and scallion greens. Serve with cucumber, lime wedges and pickled chilies.