This is one of my favorite go-to dishes when cooking for a large crowd, especially family gatherings. Fried rice and chow mein are a must have at most West Indian events. It feeds many and goes a long way. Fried rice is quite versatile as well; there are so many ways to change it up. My mom adds different vegetables and a combination of proteins depending on what she has on hand.
I suppose the Guyanese version of fried rice is different because of the inclusion of bora beans and Chinese five spice. It has quite a unique taste and the bora beans give it a nice crunch as well. This fried rice comes together quickly once you have all the ingredients prepped and ready to go.
Start by prepping all your vegetables. Cooking fried rice is a quick process so having everything ready is essential. For the vegetables, you’ll need some diced carrots, chopped bora beans, and shredded cabbage. For the flavors, you’ll need onions, garlic, grated ginger, Chinese five-spice powder, soy sauce, mushroom sauce, oyster sauce, and scallions for garnish.
The key to a really good fried rice is ensuring the rice is cold. I like to cook it the night before so it’s stale. I also prefer to use extra long grain rice for this fried rice since it’s lighter and softer than parboiled rice. The rice must be cold so that it remains loose while frying. Freshly cooked rice will continue to release starch when being tossed up in the heat and will make the fried rice sticky.
Once you boil and strain the rice, spray a shallow pan with oil and spread the rice inside. Allow to cool overnight or for a few hours until completely cold.
Season your choice of protein. I used chicken breast for this recipe- it was just easier and quicker for me. You can use a combination of chicken and shrimp or any other protein you like. Cook meat and set aside. Alternatively, you may choose to make this just a vegetable fried rice and cook your protein on the side.
I didn’t photograph every step here since it wasn’t necessary. First saute the onions, garlic, and ginger. Then add the carrots and let it cook a few minutes. Since the carrots are hard, they need a little extra time to cook. Add the bora beans and cabbage next. Saute a minute or two, add the rice a little at a time. Add sauce and chicken, toss until completely coated.
Add scallions to garnish. Adjust salt to taste.