Nasi goreng (or fried rice in English) is definitely one of my favourite lazy/easy dishes to make. Not only is it quick and satisfying, it’s the perfect way to use up that crispy dried up leftover rice in the fridge! Although nasi goreng may just seem like an easy mix and toss of whatever you want + rice on the wok, it’s not. I LOVE fried rice and one thing that I really cannot stand is MUSHY and/or tasteless fried rice.
There are a few rules that need to be followed when making fried rice. First thing’s first, never use freshly cooked hot steamy rice to make fried rice. Avoid ingredients/seasonings that are too liquidy or saucy in your fried rice (no frosty frozen veggies please). A little bit is fine. Use high heat and toss and toss! The most important is to avoid excess moisture. Follow these rules and you’re golden!
I’ve made so many fried rice dishes within the past year or so and below is my favourite go-to. It’s incredibly flavourful with very minimal ingredients (no complicated asian sauces!) and the crispy anchovies just make it quite frankly irresistible. Top it with crispy fried egg and you have a complete, quick and satisfying meal!
Nasi Goreng Kampung
Malay-style spicy fried rice with bird's eye chilies, crispy anchovies and water spinach.
- 3 cloves garlic
- 5 shallots, (see note 1)
- 3 tbsp asian dried anchovies, star ingredient
- 3-6 green or red bird's eye chilies, (adjust according to preference)
- 2 eggs, optional
- 2 cups cooked white rice, cooled
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 handful water spinach, chopped
Fry 2 tbsp of anchovies in hot oil until crispy and set aside.
Coarsely ground garlic, shallots and the remaining anchovies in a food processor.
Heat up the same oil used to fry the anchovies in a wok and sauté the paste in medium to medium high heat until brown (this gives the most flavour!). Remember, brown food is good!
Push the paste to the side of the wok and crack eggs into the wok. Let it set for a while before scrambling and mixing them all together.
Throw in water spinach and stir-fry until the stalks have softened.
Add in rice, sugar, fish sauce and continue tossing until well combined. Taste and adjust.
Throw in the fried anchovies into the rice (leave some for garnish). Mix well.
Serve hot topped with crispy fried egg and garnished with more fried anchovies.
- Substitute with half a small/medium yellow onion if shallots are not available.
- Water spinach can be substituted with baby spinach. Add in baby spinach after rice.
- Always use cooled white rice for stir-frying so it doesn't turn wet & mushy. Rice that is cooked the day before is best for fried rice.