Nasi Goreng (Fried Rice)

Nasi Goreng with a squeeze of fresh lime.  PHOTO: COPYRIGHT EIGHTEEN THOUSAND ISLANDS 2015

Nasi Goreng with a squeeze of fresh lime. PHOTO: COPYRIGHT EIGHTEEN THOUSAND ISLANDS 2015

If you've ever been to Bali or anywhere else in Indonesia, there's a very good chance you had a plate of nasi goreng at some point. Breakfast, lunch or dinner, nasi goreng (nasi = rice, goreng = fried) is a staple dish on any of Indonesia's islands. There are infinite variations of nasi goreng and different regions will do things differently. I've opted here for one of the two variations my mum cooks, a very simple kecap manis (sweet soy sauce) based variety (the other was a spicier tumeric variant which I'll add to this blog at a later date).

My method here is also based on the classic street seller approach, that is, it's quick and easy - cooked in a flash, so you'll need to have your ingredients all lined up and close at hand because it's all over in the blink of an eye. The main thing here is to have your steamed white rice pre-cooked and cooled, making sure it's broken apart and not lumped together as cooled rice can tend to do.

Ingredients (serves 4):

• 4-5 cups of steamed rice (cooled) - This is roughly 1.5 cups of uncooked rice
• 150g of pancetta, diced/cubed no larger than 1cm - You can use chicken, pork, prawns etc.
• 2 free range eggs, whisked roughly with a fork
• 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
• 1 red onion, finely diced
• 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
• 1 teaspoon of ginger, chopped
• 1 bunch of pak choy, chopped - or bok choy, choy sum etc. 
• 1 tablespoon of Eighteen Thousand Island Chilli Sauce or samba oelek
• 2 tablespoons of Eighteen Thousand Island Gluten Free Kecap Manis
• salt, pepper
• 1 spring onion, chopped
• Red chilli, chopped (optional for garnish)
• 2 tablespoons of fried shallots (optional for garnish)


Heat the oil in a large wok and saute the diced onion. On a high heat and add your pancetta or finely diced alternative and turn until cooked (these are diced small so they should cook fast). Add the whisked eggs and a pinch of salt and pepper, mixing until the eggs begin to form an omelette-like consistency. Throw in the garlic, ginger, pak choy and sambal oelek and toss for about 30 seconds before adding the rice and kecap manis. Turn until everything is well mixed, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Serve onto plates or into bowls and garnish with spring onion, red chilli and fried shallots. Add a squeeze of lime if that's your thing. Best eaten along with a fiery sambal (chilli sauce).