As I sit in my kiddo’s Dentist office waiting room, watching Moana for the 14th time while he gets a filling. I feel 3000 miles away from Hawaii (because I am). I’m over hearing other parents say they’re now in the mood for “Hawaiian food” and how they should order a “Hawaiian” pizza for dinner. I am reminded how much I hate it when people call things “Hawaiian” when it usually means some kind of totally unoriginal Americanized dish that has pineapple or coconut in it. Bleh! But growing up in Hawaii, and seeking out true Hawaiian restaurants, as well as growing up cooking Hawaiian food, makes it ok for me to call my fried rice, “Hawaiian”. There is no Pineapple, or coconut in it but there is SPAM!! In fact is has all my of favorite processed meats in it, Spam, Hawaiian Portuguese sausage, and lap cheong (Chinese sausage). If you haven’t had Hawaiian Portuguese sausage or lap cheong, you have not lived! Portuguese sausage is very similar (obviously) to pork linguica but in Hawaii it is not a hard sausage and it has a similar flavor to a chorizo but not as strong. Lap cheong is a harder pork sausage that basically is 50/50 fat to meat but has a satisfying sweet flavor to it. Then you add spam in the mix and it’s just the most amazing fatty trifecta of awesomeness!
When fried rice happens in our house, it is not a side dish to orange chicken. It’s not even a meal we’d have for dinner. When fried rice happens in the Rosauer house, its for breakfast. I don’t know why I only make it for breakfast, it’s just how I’ve always had it. Even my husbands family always had it for breakfast. My Swedish mom always made fried rice just like my Filipino grandma. While visiting with my grandma, every morning she would make fried rice at 4am for breakfast but we wouldn’t even get up until at least 8am! But, every morning it was always fried rice. She would always use at least one the meats from the fatty trifecta of awesomeness or sometimes she would use Vienna sausages, which I never ate because there has to be a line drawn somewhere for canned meat products!
Hawaiian Fried Rice: Yield 8 servings (or enough to feed an army)
3 cups of cooked white rice (I use short grain, and usually its left over from another night)
1 medium Onion, diced
2 Carrots, diced
2 Celery stocks, diced
1/4 a head of Cabbage, thinly sliced
4 Lap Cheong, sliced into rounds
1/2ish a Portuguese Sausage diced
1/2 can of Spam, diced
3T Soy Sauce, more if needed
1t Sesame Oil
1t Granulated Garlic
1t Granulated Onion
1t Pepper Flakes
To Start: Cook rice if you don’t have any left over
Step One: In your biggest fry pan (and I mean big, my pan in about 15 inches) cook Lap Cheong until some fat has rendered and it started getting a golden brown, then remove. Keep an eye on it as it cooks really fast!
Step Two: Repeat the step, this time the Spam then Portuguese sausage, in that order, not removing any rendered fat.
Step Three: With only the rendered fat in the pan, add in all the veggies, lightly salt and cook until all veggies are tender.
Step Four: In a bowl mix the soy sauce, sesame oil, granulated garlic, onion, pepper flakes, and sugar.
Step Five: Once the veggies are done remove them from the pan. Add oil and rice and cook until the rice starts to get crispy in the bottom.
Step Six: Add back to the pan all of the veggies and the meat and mix well. Add all the sauce, adding more soy sauce or salt to taste.
Step Seven: In the same bowl that the sauce was in, whisk the eggs well. This way you can use up the remaining goodies left in the bowl as seasoning. In the frying pan make a well in the center of the rice, add oil if needed and scramble the eggs to a soft scramble before mixing into the rice.
Step Eight: Top with sliced green onions and serve. It’s also great if instead of scrambling the eggs into the rice, fry an over easy egg and top the rice with that!