Each week, through the course of internet browsing and obsessive Food Network watching, I will bookmark or “pin” recipes that sound intriguing. Normally, those recipes sit untouched for months before I decide to actually get around to making them, but this recipe called to me immediately and whispered in my ear until I decided to make it only a few short days after seeing it on Barefoot Contessa. I’m not sure if it was the simplicity, or the use of kimchi, or the simple fact that it was a fried rice recipe, which is one of my favorite meals to make when Chase isn’t around.* Either way, I’m glad I didn’t wait.
*Every few months of the last 5 years of our relationship, I will try to casually suggest to Chase that I make fried rice for dinner. Every single time, he starts to moan and complain like a kid who’s being asked if he wants brussels sprouts for dessert, and so I’ve never made it. When he **shocker** admitted to liking this kimchi fried rice, I demanded that explain why he’s been so opposed in the past, and his response was, “Oh, I guess that by fried rice, I thought you meant just plain white rice.”
A) The fact that Chase really thinks I would serve a bowl of plain rice and call it “dinner,” is perhaps the most insulting thing he’s ever said to me.
B) People aren’t lying: communication is key (clearly we still have to work on ours)
Kimchi Fried Rice
Adapted from Barefoot Contessa
Thing that I really thought was missing from this recipe was sesame oil. How anyone can think of making fried rice without using sesame oil is beyond me. Also, I didn’t have Korean chili powder, so I admitted it altogether and it worked out just fine.
1/4 cup olive oil (a little more than that if you don’t use a non-stick skillet)
1/4 cup finely diced yellow onion
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup finely chopped sour kimchi
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 cup cooked day-old rice
1 scallion, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
Heat half of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often until the onions are well softened. Add in the garlic, and continue to cook until the onions start to turn brown. Turn the heat up to high and add the kimchi, cooking until it starts to become crispy. Add in the rice, soy sauce and sesame oil. Cook, stirring often, until the rice is warmed through and beginning to brown. Transfer to a bowl to serve.
At this point, either wipe the skillet that you’re using clean, or heat a separate small skillet over medium-high heat. Add in the last few tablespoons of oil and crack the egg into the skillet. Cover the pan with a lid and cook until the yolk is barely set, about 1-2 minutes. Transfer the egg to the top of the rice, and garnish with slices scallions. Eat immediately, breaking the yolk to act as a sauce over the rice.