Lover of leftovers that I am, Christmas and its mountains of food is a time of pure joy for me - even as I am tucking into my turkey, my head is ticking away with ideas for what I’m going to do with what is left. All the trimmings and treats that come with Christmas - the meats, veggies, cheese, sauces, nuts - make lovely ingredients to create new recipes with. Last year we had family staying with us over the Christmas period and, although I am never happier than when I am in my kitchen cooking for them, I was on my knees by the time I’d served Christmas lunch. I’d also ordered enough food to feed a small country, so on Boxing Day I wanted a recipe that involved minimum effort and maximum leftovers usage; and lo, Festive Fried Rice was born - hallelujah!
Rice that has been cooked and well cooled is the best sort for frying, so at some point on the day before you make this recipe you need to cook some rice and put it in the fridge overnight. Then it’s a simple case of chopping up and frying onion and garlic in oil in a wok or large frying pan, and adding anything and everything of your leftovers, chopping things up roughly first - last year I used turkey, bacon, sausages, sprouts, chestnuts, carrots, parsnips… I think I even chucked in some stuffing. Make sure everything is thoroughly heated through, then add the cold rice, season generously with salt (or light soy sauce) and pepper and fry for about five minutes until everything is well mixed. If you want Eggy Festive Fried Rice, fry a thin omelette in a separate frying pan, then chop up into little bits and add this to the rice. An optional garnish of chopped herbs, pomegranate seeds, and toasted nuts (any Christmassy nuts will do), a squeeze of lemon or lime and a blob of cranberry sauce on the side, and you’re done.
Whatever you eat, and whoever you’re spending it with, may your stockings be full, your turkeys cooked, and your family games of Monopoly free of expletives and upturned tables - Happy Christmas!