When I was a child, my mother would often stretch the family meal with steamed salted fish and minced pork served over rice. Sometimes she would fry the rice with bits of salted fish. Satisfying and full of wok-fragrance, we viewed this dish as rather rustic, but now it is considered chic and served in upmarket restaurants. The following recipe is adapted from Golden Leaf Restaurant at the Conrad Hong Kong hotel. For the best results use day-old cooked rice.
- 80 ml vegetable oil (1/3 cup)
- 30 gm salted fish, or to taste, skinned and lightly rinsed in water (see note)
- 100 gm chicken thigh fillets, cut into small cubes
- 2 eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
- 400 gm steamed long-grain rice, preferably cooked the night before
- ½ cup thinly sliced green onions
- 1 cup bean sprouts, trimmed
- 1 tbsp light soy sauce
- 1Heat half the oil in a wok over high heat. Add salted fish and stirfry for 2-3 minutes or until crisp and golden, then remove using a slotted spoon and set aside. Add chicken to wok, stirfry for 1-2 minutes or until chicken turns white, then remove using a slotted spoon and set aside. Add remaining oil, pour in egg and cook, swirling it around until just set. Add rice and stirfry, separating grains, for 2 minutes. Add salted fish, chicken and remaining ingredients, season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, stirfry for another minute or until heated through and serve immediately.
Note One of the best salted fish is Nan Fong. It's made with mackerel from Thailand and is available vacuum-packed in the refrigerated section of Asian grocers.