Family-Recipe Kampung Fried Rice
Here's a dish that I've loved since I was a kid.
My grandfather used to cook it. So did my uncle, aunts, and my mom. Since I've never tasted anything similar outside of the family, I'm assuming it's a family recipe (secret? not any more..)
Recently watched my mom cook it, and was surprised at how easy it was. Ingredients are few, cheap, and easy to find (in malaysia). Yet, the results are simply amazing.
* Main ingredient - dried baby shrimps and anchovies. This provides the main flavour of the dish.
Soak it for a while, then chop into fine fine pieces (as in following pic). Tumbuk even better.
* Slices of cucumber (a little more than in pic would be good)
* Garlic. My grandfather used to just take several cloves and smash it (along with the skin). Since garlic is scarce here, I chop mine into fine pieces to get as much flavour out of my 2 miserable cloves.
* Chilly. Just put aside as much chilly as you think you can take, and add on one more. Spiciness brings out the best in the dish. I don't have cilly padi, so I used dried bird-eye chilly. More spicy, but less taste.
* Another important ingredient - Fish Sauce, either Nampla or budu. Nampla should be easier to find. They even sell it here in Edinburgh. In the event that both are not available, soy sauce could be use as a substitute but with a significant loss in flavour.
* (not in pic) Overnight rice, ie. cooked rice that has been kept in fridge overnight. Provides the ideal texture for frying.
* (not in pic) 1 egg.
Stir fry garlic in oil till lightly brown, then add in the chopped shrimp and anchovies.
Within a few minutes, you will get a wonderful aroma, a quick preview of the final results. (At this point, if you don't like the smell, it's still not too late to make a detour. Just add water, vege, some meat, and you'll have a decent soup :p )
Add in the cucumbers and chilly padi. Splash on some Fish Sauce to season the ingredients.
When the cucumber is visibly softer, add in the rice. Mix it well, and add in a little more Fish sauce.
Finally, part the rice to give an opening in the center. Add a little oil, and crack in an egg. Keep stirring the center portion till you get scrambled egg. Mix up the whole dish, and server.
Eat while it's hot!