Last week while I lazily lied on the couch watching, you guessed it, cooking shows, the lovely Bill Granger was working his magic in the kitchen. He has this amazing ability to make me feel like I want to run away to Australia, buy a house on the beach, wear only white and light blue clothing and cook healthy and refreshing food all day. He just seems so insanely laid back and I imagine lunch at his house to feel like a mini-holiday. Everything seems so calm and soothing.
So when Bill started his Thai Fried Rice I sat up a bit (ok, I just opened my eyes a bit more) and paid very close attention. I really adore Thai food and when he said that he rustles this together in a matter of minutes I knew this would be on my menu soon. The only thing I didn’t like about his recipe was that he used tomatoes which seemed odd to me and also, obviously, his generous use of fresh Coriander. I’ve said it before and here it goes again : I cannot STAND fresh coriander. It tastes like leaf…yes, I know it IS a leaf, but I don’t want my leaves to taste like actual leaves from a tree. I also decided that I would add protein of some sort and decided on prawns for us and Chicken for my dad and the kids.
I cheated a tiny little bit and added a lot of Pesto Princess’ Thai Pesto and you should be able to get it quite easily at most supermarkets but if you struggle to find it, feel free to use a tsp or two of Thai Green Curry paste. It won’t give you exactly the same flavour but it will still be delish. I decided to add some coconut milk to my dish to moisten up the chicken and prawns a bit and it really worked tremendously well.
Whilst eating this, it really hit me that we are moving from the heat of Summer into the cooler mornings and evenings of Autumn and I vowed to enjoy all the fresh fruit and vegetables I can before they are all replaced by oranges, naartjies and grapefruits. Winter is by far my favourite season but I hate that I can’t eat watermelon, nectarines and peaches on a daily basis so I will be overdosing myself on all of those until they are no where to be found anymore. Which Summer foods are you going to miss?
4 cups Jasmine rice (one cup per person), cooked
1 cup spring onions / scallions, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1tsp crushed ginger
4 skinless, deboned chicken breasts, chopped or 800g prawns
300g mixed vegetables (I used sugar snap peas, baby corn, broccolini and fine green beans)
3tbsn Thai pesto
2tbsn soy sauce
1tbsn fish sauce
3/4 cup coconut milk
juice of 2 limes
- In a wok, fry the spring onions, garlic and ginger until fragrant and add the chicken.If you’re using prawns, stir-fry WITH the vegetables.
- Stir fry for 3 minutes then add the vegetables.
- Stir fry for another 5 minutes before adding the pesto, soy sauce, fish sauce, coconut milk and honey. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes. Pour off some of the sauce and reserve.
- Add the rice to the wok and stir to combine with the protein and vegetables.
- At this stage I like to add the reserved sauce back in, but do so cautiously, you don’t want to wet the rice, just moisten it.
- Check to see if the seasoning is correct and adjust with lime juice and soy.
- Serve with fresh coriander (or parsley like me), chopped chillies and lime cheeks.