Not the high-heat stir-fry you might expect, this recipe relies on a simple technique: a flavourful kimchi sauce is mellowed out with butter, then used to sauté leftover rice. The resulting dish is easily scaled up, as adaptable as it is brilliant, and a great way to use up leftovers (not just rice!). Spam, ham or any leftover meat you have around would work well here. (And vegetarians, of course, can just leave the meat out altogether.)
Kimchi fried rice
Makes: Serves 2
Total time: 30 minutes
3tbsp unsalted butter
½ small onion, medium dice
170g roughly chopped kimchi
2tbsp kimchi juice, or to taste
100g small-dice Spam, ham or leftover cooked meat
400g cooked, cooled rice (preferably short-grain)
2tsp soy sauce, or to taste
1tsp sesame oil, or to taste
2tsp vegetable oil
Salt to taste
Crumbled or slivered nori (roasted seaweed) for garnish
Sesame seeds for garnish
1. In a non-stick saute pan or well-seasoned cast-iron pan, melt butter over medium-low heat, and add onions. Cook, stirring, until the onions start to sizzle, about 2 minutes. Add kimchi and kimchi juice, and stir until it comes to a boil, about 3 minutes. Add Spam or other cooked meat, and cook until sauce is nearly dried out, about 5 minutes.
2. Break up the rice in the pan with a spatula, and stir it to incorporate. Turn heat to medium. Cook, stirring, until the rice has absorbed the sauce and is very hot, about 5 minutes. Stir in soy sauce and sesame oil. Taste, and adjust with more soy sauce, sesame oil or kimchi juice. Turn heat down slightly, but let the rice continue to cook, untouched, until lightly brown while you cook the eggs.
3. Place a small non-stick saute pan over medium heat, and add the vegetable oil. When it is hot, add eggs, season with salt and fry to your desired doneness. Serve rice topped with fried eggs, nori and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.
© The New York Times
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