Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Rice Revelation

The town I lived in when hurricane Katrina hit in 2005 contained many things that I will always miss. Most notably is my house and all of its belongings. But the town was also home to several dining landmarks that I still think about 4 1/2 years later. One of those landmarks is China Jade. China Jade was a Chinese restaurant with the best Chinese food ever! I have eaten Chinese food at several other establishments in and around New Orleans and several restaurants in and around DC and I have never tasted Chinese that could even hold a candle to China Jade. Their food was amazing! They had the best Won Ton Soup, Fried Rice and Egg Rolls - staples on a classic Chinese menu that really define a good one!

Every time I eat Chinese I compare it to China Jade and it never even comes close. I certainly didn't expect that the first time I would taste comparable Chinese to my beloved China Jade would be in my own kitchen. I simply made this fried rice to accompany some Asian Short Ribs that I was making for Valentine's dinner. It was easy and it seemed to fit the bill. I wasn't attempting to recreate my coveted Chalmette Chinese cuisine, but I was shocked when I had my first bite. It was delicious and VERY similar in flavor, texture and consistency to the best fried rice I have ever had and haven't had since prior to August 2005. I can't wait to make this for my brother Kent and my sister Jessica to see if they agree. They were my frequent partners in crime for China Jade visits and I know they will be the perfect judges.

Ham Fried Rice
Adapted from Southern Living November 2000

  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-2 cups diced cooked ham steak
  • 1/2 large red bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, diced
  • 3 cups cooked rice
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon chili-garlic sauce
  • 4 green onions, sliced

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a skillet or wok at medium-high heat 2 minutes. Swirl the oil to coat the wok up the sides of the pan. Beat eggs with a whisk in a small bowl. Add eggs to wok; cook 2 minutes and scramble.

Remove from skillet; chop and set aside.

Heat remaining 3 tablespoons oil in skillet or wok; add bell pepper and onion; stir-fry 5 minutes until soft.

Add ham, and stir-fry 1 to 2 minutes or until golden.

Add rice and next 2 ingredients;

stir-fry 3 to 4 minutes or until thoroughly heated.

Stir in reserved egg,

and sprinkle with green onions.

Mix ingredients together and serve.

Click Here for My Adapted Printable Recipe


Krista said...

This last shot is gorgeous! The rice sounds delicious. I have a Chinese restaurant like that in my life...the one I compare all others to, but have yet to find a replacement. I'm glad that if you can't have China Jade, you can at least get the rice. : )

Woody said...

The ham in this dish was awesome.

The Chef In My Head said...

I thought of you today, did you see the red Kitchen Aide with the glass bowl in this month's issue of Bon Appetit?? I just made fried rice last week, I liked the flavor but it was missing the pretty colors. This looks great! ~LeslieMichele

MaryBeth said...

I love fried rice...I have never had it made with ham, i bet it is just out of this world good.

teresa said...

mmmm, i want to dig right in!

Sush said...

I am wondering if the Jade East in New Orleans East is a part of China Jade? Do you know? I love this recipe will try it tonight. How's the house coming?

I keep running into Who Dat fans wherever I am! How about you?

Happy Day!

Crafty P said...

that looks amazing! I am so hungry and am definitely going to give fried rice a try sometime soon! thanks for sharing

Shari 3 boys said...

where did u live?

I went to highschool in ocean springs, ms.

Alot fof my friends there lost alot also.
That chinese place sounds familiar?

Elizabeth said...


China Jade was in St. Bernard Parish.