Steaming for fried rice

>> Monday 19 February 2007

This post is in response to a question asked by a commenter. I hope this technique helps, Grace. I do not have pics at this time but I promise to try and get some.
This technique has been handed down to me by my mother who learnt it from a friend of hers who is Chinese, Auntie Bernice. Here goes.


  • The best rice to make the fried rice with is the regular white long grain rice but use whatever rice you have.
  • Steam the rice way in advance of making it into fried rice as it needs to be completely cool.
  1. In a large bowl, wash the rice at least 3 times until the water runs clear.
  2. Remove any excess water from the rice.
  3. Transfer rice to a pot, and ensure that the rice is level all around.
  4. Pour enough water into the pot with the rice until it just covers the rice.
  5. With a clean hand, place it plam-side down pressing gently on the rice in the water.
  6. If the water does not reach the base of your wrist (beginning of your wrist) then add some more water until when you press down with your hand, the water reaches that point. The base of your wrist it the part that bends - it separates the hand from the forearm, sounds technical but it is not.
  7. Once you have established the right water level with the rice. Add some salt, drizzle some oil and stir.
  8. Cover the pot and set it on high heat. Warning! do not move away from the kitchen! You will need to constantly monitor the pot because as soon as it gives its first bubble of a boil, you have to turn the flame down very low, let the pot remain covered so the rice can cook/steam slowly.
  9. The timing will vary depending on a number of variables: the amount of rice you are cooking, the size of the pot and the size of your burner.
  10. If you're cooking three cups of rice, I'd say at the end of 20 minutes, check the rice and give it a stir. You will notice whether or not it is still moist with water, if it is, cover it again and let it continue to steam for another 10 minutes.
  11. When the rice is finished cooking, remove it from the heat and let it cool completely.
  12. After the rice is cooled, you have to loosen it up (the oil you put in when cooking it will aid in this process).
  13. With clean hands, loosen the rice and place it on a flat surface such as a platter or baking sheet.
Whenever you are ready go ahead and prepare all your other ingredients for the fried rice and cook to suit your own taste.

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