The biggest challenge with leftovers is making them into dishes that are totally different from the original, but still appetizing. Because it freezes well, and there are generally leftovers, I always seem to have several bags of cooked rice in my freezer. When I have leftover meat, I like to make the following Spicy Korean Fried Rice. In addition to the leftover rice and meat, you can incorporate leftover vegetables into this dish to make it your own. Hands-on time to prepare this dish is about 30 minutes, so it’s suitable for busy cooks and weeknight evenings.
Gochugang is a spicy Korean hot pepper paste, and it is used in dozens of Korean dishes. Nowadays, it is often found on the Asian aisle of many larger grocery stores, and always found in Asian grocery stores. It has, in fact, become as trendy as the Korean food it is used in. A bit of a warning: It’s Hot! So you may adjust the amount in the recipe to your liking.
In this recipe, gochugang is mixed with a few other ingredients and poured over the leftover meat or chicken (we love pork roast, or chicken breast best, but leftover beef is also yummy), and sautéed so that the Korean flavor goes through it and transforms it. If you don’t have leftovers, you can simply chop fresh meat or chicken and sauté it a bit longer to cook it through.
At Halloween time, I substitute black rice (also available at Asian groceries), and serve it at my annual Halloween BOO-ffet under the designation “Maggots Magnifique!” Despite the name it always gets devoured.
6 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
3 tablespoons gochujang (Korean hot pepper paste), adjust amount to your taste
4 1/2 tablespoons sugar
2 cups leftover cooked pork, beef, or chicken
7 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, finely chopped
6 cups cooked rice, cooled and chilled or at room temperature
1 cup frozen peas and carrots
2 cups rinsed bean sprouts
- Mix the sauce ingredients in a bullet blender, or whisk until well mixed; pour enough of the sauce mixture over the meat to moisten; set aside.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet or wok; add the eggs and scramble. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add another tablespoon of oil along with the onions, garlic, and ginger; stir-fry until softened.
- Move the onion mixture to the side; add another tablespoon oil, and add the meat.
- Stir-fry the meat over high heat for a minute or two until the meat has absorbed the sauce.
- Transfer the onions and meat to a plate.
- Add the remaining 4 tablespoons oil and the rice; stir-fry until it is hot, begins to smell good, and starts to get a bit crispy.
- Mix in the meat, onion mixture, eggs, and remaining sauce.
- Stir in the peas and carrots and bean sprouts; stir-fry until heated through. Serve.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 349 Calories from Fat 117
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 34% Protein 14% Carb. 53%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 13 g
Saturated Fat 2 g
Cholesterol 69 mg
Sodium 954 mg
Total Carbohydrate 46 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sugars 5 g
Protein 12 g
Vitamin A 3% Vitamin C 9% Calcium 0% Iron 16%