Many people have been requesting another common Thai food, “Thai Fried Rice”
There are many types of Thai fried rice in Thailand. Many people asked me about Thai fried rice, but whenever I tried to offer this dish in my cooking classes, it didn’t get as many attentions as it should. I think I should just share the recipe here instead. Thai fried rice is one of the common dishes on Thai Street Food. When I was in Thailand, I usually ordered Thai fried rice with pork. Somehow beef wasn’t quite popular for Thai street food vendors. You can easily get pork, chicken, shrimps, or even squid. Some vendors might offer fish but it’s not quite common to get fish from Thai street food vendors.
I wrote this recipe in 2014 and updated in 2020. Originally, my recipe was just Thai fried rice with shrimps. Since this is a new year and new normal, I would just want to upgrade my Thai fried rice with shrimps to “Thai pineapple fried rice with shrimps”. It’s just as easy as it sounds. If you don’t want pineapple, you just take out pineapple from the recipe. I don’t recommend using any canned pineapples. Canned pineapples tend to be on a sweeter side. Fresh pineapples have acidity and could help balance the flavors a little bit better. Also, you can definitely keep the skin of the pineapple and serve as a dish.
I know it looks cute and appetite to use a real pineapple as a serving dish. But, I would like to let you know that the pineapple fried rice that we get out of the recipe is much more than one portion that we can just serve in one pineapple. In other words, someone has to sacrifice eating pineapple fried rice on a regular plate instead of the real pineapple. Guess what! Whom do you think has to sacrifice? Yup! Me! Some of you may know only my husband and I live in this place. When I made this recipe, I would get about 3-4 portions. Eating the pineapple fried rice in the pineapple will give you a different experience (and a little better taste), my husband just said that! But, I would say it’s just more fun (not much of the flavors). By the end of the day, we ended up sharing the fried rice in this pineapple. Then, we finished the rest on our plates.
I also would like to point out one more thing. I know you may think Ploy is not taking the tails of the shrimps out! Correct! I am not. There are some reasons for that. I like to take the shells off as well as deveined the shrimps. But, keeping the tails on will help the shrimps maintain their shapes. Shrimps will not get shrunk as much. You can easily take the tails off if you want to do them for your own convenience. For me, it’s not too difficult to take the tails off while you eat.
Let’s get started. It’s easy and delicious :))))
3 1/2 Cups of Steamed Rice (Cooked steamed rice with less water) —> See how to cook “Steamed Rice” from the previous recipe, but use less water for fried rice cooking. You can easily use the leftover steamed rice that was cooked regularly. I found that the leftover rice in the fridge will be a bit drier anyway. So, this is a good recipe to use up the leftover steamed rice.
1/2 Lb Shrimps
1/2 Fresh Pineapple, Diced (Optional)
4 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1/4 Cup Frozen Sweet Pea, Defrosted
1 Teaspoon Sugar
2 Tablespoon Fish Sauce
2 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
2 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
1 Teaspoon Ground White Pepper
1 Scallion, Chopped
How to Cook Thai Fried Rice with Shrimp
1. Heat up the pan over medium high heat. Add oil and half of the garlic.
2. When the garlic is fragrant, add shrimps. Stir until shrimp is cooked and then transfer the shrimps to a bowl. Set aside.
3. Add the rest of the garlic and stir until fragrant. Crack the eggs to the pan. Then, add rice very quickly. You have to add the rice while the eggs stay raw in the pan so that the eggs coat the rice very well. Drizzle soy sauce and fish sauce over the rice. Stir well on medium high heat.
4. Keep stirring until the rice is fragrant and toasty. Add sugar. You can easily skip sugar. But, to help balance the flavors, sugar is a good addition.
5. Once the fried rice is well combines, add pineapple and stir well. You can skip pineapple if you just want to make regular Thai fried rice with shrimps.
6. Transfer the shrimps back in and add sweet pea. Stir to combine. Then, turn off the heat and sprinkle some white pepper and chopped scallions.
7. Serve nicely in a pineapple or a plate with a wedge of lime (or you can easily squeeze the lime juice on top of the fried rice before serve.)
To prepare the pineapple to be a bowl, I just use a knife to cut the flesh out and then use a spoon to scrape the rest of the pineapple out. You might not get a nice cut out of the last flesh. But, you can easily use them in marinating the meat or just make a smoothie out of that.
Condiments: In Thailand, we always condiments for all the dishes including some garnishes. I would say the basic garnishes are scallions, cucumber, and sliced tomato. I know it sounds weird but that’s what we serve. For condiments, we offer fish sauce, sugar, vinegar, and chili. For Thai fried rice particular, a Thai street food vendor will serve a mixture of sauce on a side. In Thai, we called “Nam Pla Prik” I know it sounds not nice but we call chili in Thai, Prik. “Nam Pla Prik” means Chili Fish Sauce, but it actually contains fish sauce, sugar, chili, and some sorts of acidity either vinegar or lime juice.
If you want to upgrade your Thai fried rice to be a little fancy, just use lobsters instead of shrimps. I know somehow if you live in Boston area, lobsters are not expensive in the summer. Sometimes, I got a lobster for about $5 a pound. In that case, I cooked with lobsters almost everyday.
For this dish, I boiled the whole lobster for 7 minutes. Then, I took out the lobster flesh from the shells. Of course, I took everything out from the legs and even the head part. In the head area (especially cheek of the lobsters), it contains a lot of meats. Just make sure you don’t throw away before you get all the meat out. I clean the head a bit after taking the meat out and throw away some greenish. Some people love them but I will just leave them out for this dish. I serve with a wedge of lime and if you want to have some condiments, you obviously can. But, I think for my dish, I seasoned everything in the pan so my husband and I didn’t even need to use any condiments.