Nam Kao at E-San in Portland, OR:
I tried it with high expectations, set by a friend who enthused on the glories of this dish, a dangerous action under most circumstances. But I wasn’t disappointed. Nay, I was enraptured by the full-yet-delicate flavors and pop-rocks texture of the fried rice. With each bite I tried to track each flavor so that I might, one day, recreate this wonder.
That day came last night.
(recipe at bottom of page)
Whenever I make analogies, I find that they are always about food - growing, preparing, cooking, eating — so now that I’m talking food, I (curiously) find my analogy in figure skating. It’s like I set out to do a One-and-a-half Toe Loop with a Split Jump and wound up executing a Double Axel. While it wasn’t bad, it wasn’t the dish I was going for.
Would I make it again?
Yes! I will keep trying until I nail it!
Thai Fried Rice (Lettuce Wraps)
I added some marinated tofu to this.
Drain & rinse tofu, press water out, slice into 1” long slivers and toss gently in a mixture of soy, chili oil, sesame oil, minced garlic, and lime juice & zest.
Get pan totally flaming hot.
Fry tofu slivers. Remove, set on paper towel.
Add oil (combo olive & veg).
Crack an egg and throw it in the pan. Get Japanese-Steak-House crazy with it.
Add cooked rice (pre-purchased from the Vietnamese restaurant down the street, cheap and easy)
Heavy tsp fish sauce
2 tsp soy
juice from 2 lime wedges
tsp garlic chili sauce
2 cloves minced garlic
bunch chopped scallions
Stir it up!
Then add chopped cilantro, peanuts. Stir that up.
I sprinkled toasted sesame seed on top too. Serve with lime garnish, bean sprouts, fresh cilantro on top, and lettuce leaves for wrapping!