Such a great way to utilize leftover rice. In fact, it works better with rice that has dried out somewhat. This has been adapted from a recipe from Melissa Clark via NYTimes cooking and it is great meal on its own (serve with iceberg lettuce leaves as a “wrap”) or as an accompaniment to something else. We used vegan butter, so it was completely plant based, again.
For 2-4 servings you’ll need 1 cup rice (cooked with 3 cups water for 2 cups cooked rice) or 2 cups day-old leftover rice, 1/4 head cabbage (chopped into long, thin slices), x4 scallions (chopped), x2 garlic cloves (crushed and chopped), x2-3 Tbsp fish sauce, x1-2 Tbsp soy sauce, x3 Tbsp sunflower oil, x2 Tbsp (vegan) butter.
You’ll need to either have leftover rice on-hand or you’ll need to cook your rice the day or morning before and let it sit for several hours, covered and refrigerated.
In a large skillet or wok style skillet, place 1 Tbsp oil and 1 Tbsp (vegan) butter over medium heat. Add chopped scallions and toss well unto covered and just starting to wilt – about 1-2 mins. Add chopped cabbage and garlic, and, again, toss well to coat and cook until wilted and fragrant, stirring well, 3-4 mins. Remove cabbage/scallions/garlic from pan and place on a plate to one side.
In the same pan add another 2 Tbsp oil and another 1 Tbsp (vegan) butter over medium/high heat and swirl around to make sure the whole pan, including sides, is covered. Add rice and then add fish sauce and soy sauce. Stir well and then press rice against the bottom and up the sides in a single, thin layer. Allow to cook until crackling and browning, about 3-5 mins depending on how high your heat is. Be careful not to let it burn.
Repeat this process a few times, stir the rice, press into a single layer on the bottom and up the sides, and allow to brown for 3-5 mins a few times – adding a little more fish sauce and soy sauce (and maybe a little oil) as you go (but not too much, just enough to keep it moist and flavorful).
The rice should start to brown and stick to itself. The whole process should take about 15-20 mins, again, depending on how high your heat is.
Add in the scallions and cabbage and stir well.
Place on a serving plate and eat!