This authentic Chinese ham and egg fried rice recipe has only 5 ingredients, plus oil to stir-fry and salt to season, and no soy sauce. You haven’t tasted great fried rice until you’ve tried this recipe. It’s the absolute best! Adapted from The Modern Art of Chinese Cooking by Barbara Tropp
3 ½ cups of cold cooked medium grain or short grain rice. (see important instructions below for rinsing rice before cooking)
4–5 ounces honey or maple ham, cut into ¼-inch dice (see if your grocer can cut you a 1/4 inch slice)
½ cup frozen peas, defrosted
2 large eggs, beaten
Peanut oil for stir-frying (3-4 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
6 scallions, sliced crosswise (1 cup)
Rinse, cook and cool the rice: For optimum texture and taste, it’s very important to rinse the rice in several changes of cold water before cooking. To rinse, put raw rice into a fine mesh colander and immerse it in a large bowl of water. Swish rice around to release excess starches. Lift colander. Pour out water. Repeat until water is mostly clear. Cook the rice according to package directions. Cool it before using.*
Cook The eggs: Heat wok, cast iron skillet or heavy frying pan over high heat until hot. Add 1 ½ tablespoons peanut oil and tilt pan to coat it. Pour in beaten eggs. Let them cook for a few seconds, then gently push them to one side of the pan, tilting the pan to get uncooked egg to slide onto the pan and set. Cook just until the eggs are soft-cooked. Transfer them to a dish and set aside.
Stir-fry the Rice: Add 2 additional tablespoons of oil to the skillet. When hot, add the cold rice and stir-fry for about 3 minutes, stirring to coat and separate the grains. When the rice is hot, add the salt, ham and peas and cook, tossing, for about 30 second. Add the eggs back to the skillet and, using your spatula, break them apart a bit. Add scallions and toss everything for another 15 -20 second until the eggs are hot. Serve and enjoy!
*The rice in this recipe works best if it’s cold, so great if you can cook it the day before. If you need to make this dish in a hurry, spread the hot rice out on a baking tray and set the tray in the fridge for a half hour or until the rice is cool.