145 1/2 Ways to Eat Food: Fried Rice
by Patrick Clapp
I have a small book of recipe gems that I started about nine years ago. Captured within are a cache of treasured recipes and bold experiments. All of my signature, artery-hardening, mouth-watering, there-will-be-no-leftovers recipes are contained within it.
My mother tells me that I act just like my father when I get into the kitchen. Sadly, I have to take her word for this (and I do) because I have no memories of my father cooking. Well...I have one fuzzy memory of a large strainer full of clams sitting in the kitchen sink. And probably a constructed memory of the art of wonton wrapping. But I do not recall her chief comparison that has been echoed by many of my friends: "How do you manage to use every clean bowl in the house when you [insert culinary activity here]??" Valid and amusing substitutions include: fry an egg, burn toast, and for today, create the best fried rice.
That's a lie, of course. If you ask me where to find the best fried rice, I will tell you. Here. Or rather, at the extremely little duck under a curtain and sit at a counter food stand next to the train station at Hirakata-shi in the middle of the Kansai. My father had a pretty good recipe, however, and he routinely used every small dish in the house to pull it off. Apparently he was a bit of a showman when he had an audience in the kitchen. Apparently I take after my father.
And with that introduction, I present to you, without flourish or fan-fare (beyond this wind-up), my father's best fried rice:
2 cups of day old, cold, cooked, white rice 
2 sticks of celery, chopped
3 ounces of carrots, chopped
1 ounce of green onions, chopped
chicken, thinly sliced 
blackpepper, red pepper, garlic powder
4 cubes of frozen chicken broth 
Add carrots, celery, onions, crushed red pepper flakes, and garlic power to boiling water.
Boil for 10 minutes.
In a wok with 1/2 teaspoon of oil, stir fry the chicken and set aside.
In wok with 1/2 teaspoon of oil, stir fry rice.
Add black pepper
Mix well, get it hot, some of the rice should pop or fizzle, some of it should toast. This step really takes practice and a willingness to get it wrong. 
Add 2 cubes of chicken broth, mix well.
Push rice to side.
Add chicken and peanuts, a splash of rice vinegar and soy.
Stir fry for a few minutes
Add 2 cubes of chicken broth.
Cover for a minute.
Mix all well.
Scramble the egg into the mix.
Stir fry (toss) until cooked.
1. The rice needs to be room temp or lower, this is very important. Warm rice just sucks up oil and you won't get what you need. Cold rice will pop, toast, burn, fizzle, and do all sorts of wonderful things.
2. I like to slice semi-frozen boneless breast with an electric carving knife, but whatever.
3. Honestly, you should keep an ice cube tray of frozen chicken broth on hand at all times. This is just common sense.
4. Once you start adding liquid components you are not going to fry your rice anymore, you are going to cook whatever you throw onto the stuff into the stuff. In Hirakata, the best part of their rice was how nearly burned (perfectly toasted) it was. It shouldn't be stiff and burned together, though. Like I said, this part is mostly experience and sleight of hand. Sadly, this is the make or break step.