Indonesian fried rice, nasi goreng












Besides a cheese pizza that came from a Chef Boyardee box and brownies that came from a box, that I made under supervision in the first grade, fried rice is among the first things I learned to cook from scratch by the tutelage of our housekeeper at the time, Sueko. 

Goodness, those pizzas were gross. They are nothing more than flour with yeast in it, a tin of sauce, and a package of shredded hard cheese. I recall frustration trying to stretch the dough to fit our oiled baking pan without the dough being rested so unrelaxed. It kept shrinking back. My little boy hands could not manage the task. It took forever. Eventually the dough did relax, by time, not by my efforts, but I did not know that and neither did my mum.

The brownies are nothing more than flour and coca and sugar packaged together. You add the egg, the oil and water. So you might as well do that yourself, but I did not know that and neither did my mum.

Sueko, however, had the knack. She told me fried rice uses leftover rice so that it does not go wasted. You can add to it anything that you like. I liked hotdogs so that is what I added, and I liked catsup so that went into it too.

This nasi goreng is the exact same thing as that. Bless you, Sueko for imparting your knack.

The chief difference between Indonesian and Japanese version of the same thing is Indonesian uses sweet soy sauce, tamarind, and hot chile pepper, after that pretty much anything goes. 

It is a typical breakfast. Or a buffet item, Or a dolled up restaurant meal, or something celebratory and fancy for, say, a wedding reception, it is just that versatile. It is #2 on CNN's poll of the world's top 50 people's choice favorite foods. Although it does not appear on CNN's own world's best 50 foods. CNN's readers took issue with their presumptuous list.

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