Spicy Fried Grains with Eggs and Soy

, from Issue #56. August, 2015
Photography by Aaron McLean.
Spicy Fried Grains with Eggs and Soy

Try this easy recipe for transforming cold rice and other grains such as farro or freekeh into a delicious meal. Use one grain or a combination; they all work well together. For the best result use rice or grains that were cooked the day before. The rice needs to be cold to stir-fry, so see note below if you need to cook and use it the same day.

Serves: 4


1¼ cups long grain brown rice, rinsed and drained
½ teaspoon sea salt
2½ cups cold water
olive oil
spicy or plain sesame oil
1 large leek, white and pale green part sliced thinly
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons finely chopped ginger
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 spring onions, sliced thinly
good handful coriander, chopped roughly
1 long red chilli, seeded and sliced thinly 

To serve
4 eggs, fried 
soy sauce
crispy fried shallots (optional)


Put the rice, salt and water in a medium saucepan, cover and bring to the boil.

Stir then cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook for about 35 minutes or until the rice is just cooked but still has a little bite to it. Remove from the heat, lift off the lid and place two paper towels over the rice. Replace the lid and leave for 10 minutes. Cool and refrigerate overnight. See note below if using the same day. 

Break up any clumps of rice and separate the grains with damp fingers. 

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of sesame oil in a large sauté pan and cook the leek with a good pinch of salt until tender. Scrape onto a plate and set aside.Don’t wash the pan. 

Add another 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 teaspoons of sesame oil to the pan and when hot add the garlic, ginger and sesame seeds and stir for a few seconds until fragrant.

Tip in the cold rice/grains and turn to coat. Turn frequently until the rice is hot and some of it is a little toasted. Combine the soy and vinegar then pour over the rice, turning to mix through.

Cook for another 2 minutes then stir in the spring onions, coriander and most of the chilli. 

To serve: Spoon the rice into bowls and top each with an egg and a sprinkle of chilli and shallots.

Pour a little soy over the egg before eating. 

Cook’s tip:For the best result use rice or other grains that were cooked the day before. If you need to use freshly cooked, spread the cooked grains in a single layer on one or two trays to cool. Place uncovered in the refrigerator for at least one hour before using.