* minced garlic
* green peas (frozen is okay)
* yellow corn (frozen is okay)
* carrots, diced
* egg, scrambled with a drizzle of sesame oil and a few drops shoyu
* sliced green onions
Lightly brown the garlic in a little oil then add the rice and cook until the rice is nearly done. Add the vegetables and stir frequently until they are cooked by not yet mushy. Push the rice mixture to the sides of the pan, making an opening in the middle. Add a few drops of oil then pour the scrambled egg into the well and cook until it just begins to solidify. Toss the egg in with the rice and add the green onions. Season with shoyu, salt and pepper.
* Use day-old rice. Fresh rice will work in a pinch, but tends to clump.
* Short grain white rice is standard, but I often use brown rice instead. That's probably blasphemous, but when you buy brown rice in 25lb. sacks, you tend to make a lot of brown fried rice.
* A non-stick skillet isn't required, but will bring you happiness. Bigger is better. Curved sides are nice.
* Use just enough oil or butter in the pan to keep things from sticking. Too much and your rice will end oily. Have you noticed that teppanyaki places use a pad of butter for their fried rice? That's because it tastes better. The recipes below allow for either butter or oil.
* Stir fry any meats first. When you add the rice, stir frequently to separate the grains. Add any vegetables just long enough to cook them, then add soy sauce, green onion and/or cilantro right before removing from the heat.
* There isn't a rule of thumb for knowing when the rice is done. Look for most of the excess moisture to cook off, and for some of the grains to be a little crispy. You'll get a feel for it.
* Cook everything over medium heat. Too hot and the rice will scorch and stick. Ask me how I know this.
* Finish with a drizzle of soy sauce (shoyu) and salt/pepper to taste.