Well, well, well friends. Do I have a treat for YOU!!
This week marked a big week, here in the Big Apple. Retail stores are beginning to reopen! With limited capacity, of course. So this past weekend, a certain gentleman and I went went to the Louis Vuitton pop up in SoHo! It was so cool. And all the yellow inspired the recipe I made that night!
PINEAPPLE SHRIMP FRIED RICE!
Holy cow, you guys. When I say this was amazing, I mean…it was shout-it-from-the-rooftops, lip smackin’, knee slappin’ DELICIOUS!!
Sweet, juicy pineapple, with salty and savory fried rice, complete with tender, meaty shrimp!
It was, in a word, glorious.
Now, you may think that fried rice is a kitchen sink, “leftovers” type meal, but OH NO. Not this recipe. It is a star. A five-star, show-stopper! SING OUT LOUISE!
And I’ve definitely got some tips to make it the best possible fried rice you’ll ever experience.
1: USE COLD RICE. Yep – now is not the time for a steaming, fresh batch of fluffy white rice. Nope, you want cold, from the fridge, day-old if possible, white rice. That way, it really soaks up all the bright and exciting flavors we’ll be adding. (If you didn’t plan ahead and don’t have day old rice, that’s okay! ((I didn’t either!)) You can just make your rice a few hours ahead, and pop it in the fridge to chill out for a couple of hours before you make dinner!)
2: USE BOTH TOASTED SESAME OIL AND OYSTER SAUCE – You may think that soy sauce is enough to make a delicious fried rice meal. ABSOLUTELY NOT!! Toasted sesame oil and oyster sauce are both CRITICAL ingredients to get authentic, restaurant style fried rice! So pick up a bottle of each — they’re inexpensive and will last for a long time. The depth of flavor they both add is bar none!
3: USE BUTTER! I know, I know — for my vegans and dairy free friends out there, this ingredient we’ll have to forgo, but butter truly does make this dish EXTRA DELICIOUS. Why? Because it allows the rice to BROWN. And when we’re talking cooking, BROWN = FLAVOR! So, by all means, bust out the butter, baby!
4: USE HIGH HEAT – This is another important step, because it really allows the veggies and rice to fry, and most importantly…NOT STEAM. If the rice steams in the pan, then it will stick together and get mushy and clumpy…not what we’re going for!
5: THE MORE VEGGIES THE BETTER! Seriously – this is a must, for taste and health’s sake. Plus – the more veggies, the higher the nutritional profile! In this recipe, I used carrots, peas, red bell pepper, mushrooms, onion, and pineapple! But other veggies would also work great, too! Like — broccoli or cauliflower, asparagus, okra, green beans, sugar snap peas, mango…the sky is the limit!
And finally, seasoning is everything with this dish. So don’t be afraid to add some extra soy sauce at the end, to taste!
This dish, when made traditionally, is naturally gluten free (if you use Gluten Free Soy Sauce!) I made two versions this night: the traditional, and then a Specific Carb Diet version, which used cauliflower rice instead of white rice, and it was absolutely amazing. I also had to forgo the oyster sauce (it has sugar), and I used coconut aminos in substitution for the soy sauce, as soy is not permitted on the SCD! (I will not the substitutions on the recipe!)
HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED: (SERVES 2-3)
1/2 lb peeled and deveined shrimp
2-3 cups chilled, cooked rice (or cauliflower rice, for SCD)
2 eggs, scrambled
3 cloves garlic
2 medium carrot, small dice
1 onion, minced
4 shiitake mushrooms, sliced thin
1/2 cup fresh pineapple, diced
1 red bell pepper, small dice
1/2 cup frozen peas
3 cloves garlic, freshly-minced
3 green onions, thinly sliced
salt and pepper
3 Tbsp butter (or oil)
4 Tbsp soy sauce, GF tamari, or coconut aminos (SCD use coconut aminos)
2 tsp oyster sauce (SCD omit)
2 tsp toasted sesame oil
fresh cilantro, garnish
1/2 avocado, sliced (for garnish)
Large nonstick skillet
Small nonstick frying pan
Good Chef’s Knife
Small mixing bowl
It’s important to have all the ingredients prepped and ready to go, since this meal comes together quickly! So first, prep all your veggies and measure our all of your sauces.
First, cook your shrimp. Season your shrimp with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 2 Tbsp olive oil. Place the shrimp in an even layer, being sure not to crowd the pan. (You may need to do two batches). Cook the shrimp for 2 minutes per side. They are finished cooking once they are completely pink, and have curled in on themselves. Once they’ve finished cooking, transfer them to a plate, and cover with tin foil, until the rest of the meal comes together.
Next, in a small nonstick frying pan, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil. In a small bowl, whisk your eggs with salt and pepper. Then, over medium heat, scramble your eggs, stirring occasionally. Once scrambled, transfer to a separate plate and cover with tin foil.
In the large nonstick pan, add 1 Tbsp butter to the pan, and heat until melted. (SCD, substitute oil for butter). Add your carrots, onions, and red bell pepper, season with salt and pepper, and let them cook for about 4 minutes, until they begin to soften. Then add your mushrooms and garlic and let them cook for another 4 minutes. Finally, add your pineapple, and let it cook for about 2 minutes.
Finally, add another Tablespoon of butter, let it melt, and then add the rice (or cauliflower rice), green onions, soy sauce and oyster sauce, and stir until combined. Stir for another 3-4 minutes to fry the rice. Finally stir in the scrambled eggs and cooked shrimp to combine.
Remove from heat, and then stir in the sesame oil, and more soy sauce to taste.
Serve, garnished with fresh cilantro and avocado.
***Note on Cauliflower Rice: If you are using cauliflower rice, you’ll need to let it cook for an additional 5 minutes, so that it softens and becomes tender. Also, you’ll need to use less soy sauce than rice, because it doesn’t absorb it the same as a grain does. I would suggest adding a Tbsp at a time, and then tasting, and adding, and tasting, etc, to ensure it doesn’t get over dressed!***
OK THIS WAS PHENOMENAL!!!
I honestly don’t even know where to start! Because it’s beautiful, it’s delicious, the textures are amazing, and it made my kitchen smell like the most delicious restaurant ever!
The flavors in this dish absolutely sang. The sweet, juicy pineapple, the salty, crunchy veggies, the peas that pop in your mouth, the creamy and buttery avocado, and the meaty shrimp — combined together with that toasted sesame oil — HOLY COW. Somebody call the doctor because my eyes have rolled to the back of my head, and I’m in a conniption fit of absolute food joy!
Seriously – toasted sesame oil is my new fall obsession. Not just sesame oil…TOASTED sesame oil. Any vegan worth their salt, knows that toasting nuts brings out their flavor like nothing else. And the same can be said for sesame seed oil!!!
OH MY GOSH – it is so deeply nutty. It tastes like what golden brown looks likes. If that makes sense.
And then it is seriously a stunning dish. All of the bright colors from the veggies just pop off the plate — the red pepper, orange carrot, dark green onion, light green avocado, yellow pineapple and pink shrimp. It is GORGEOUS!
Do yourself a favor and MAKE THIS DISH! I promise, your tastebuds will thank you!
And I almost forgot! The BEST part is the leftovers!!! It just gets better with time, baby! You can enjoy it for up to three days in a sealed container in the fridge!
“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
A huge shoutout to Reason Nutrition Beverage! Their all-natural, high calorie drink is not only delicious, but it has no “garbage” in it! Utilizing the wholesome goodness of coconut oil, it’s a phenomenal option for those needing to gain weight in recovery, or for those simply looking to supplement their diet with convenient and fast nutrition. Check them out!
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