My first Thai cooking lesson was at the Mandarin Oriental Thai cooking School in Bangkok. I made my way early in the morning to the Hotel. I took the Sky train (BTS) to the Taksin bridge and then walked to the pier. There was a beautiful hotel barge waiting for all the students that were joining me in the class. We cruised along the majestic Chao Phraya River, I felt so blessed and lucky to have lived this moment.
It was a hands-on cooking class and for the first time I was introduced to the world of Thai ingredients, but I also thought that the dishes were beautifully served, so simple yet so elegant. Very fitting for a five star hotel.
This fried rice is very Thai but the profile is very Chinese with flavours of caramelized pineapple, Chinese sausage and soy sauce. I heard that originally this rice was actually placed into a hollowed out pineapple and then baked in the oven. The recipe I am using is the School recipe and beautifully served on a slice of caramelized pineapple.
- 4 tablespoons soybean oil
- 1 cup pineapple, cut into bite size chunks and caramelized
- 1/2 cup Chinese sausages, diced and fried
- 1 cup prawns, shelled deveined and diced
- 2 tablespoons raisins
- 3 cups steamed rice, pre-cooked and cold
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon white pepper
- 3 tablespoons crisp-fried shallots
- 1/2 cup roasted cashew nuts
- Put one spoon of soybean oil into a wok and fry the Chinese sausage until it is cooked (about one minute) and then remove it from the oil and set aside.
- Heat the wok, put the rest of the soybean oil and add in the pineapple, Chinese sausage and prawns. Fry until the prawns are just cooked.
- Add the raisins and the pre-cooked rice and stir-fry until the rice is well covered in oil.
- Then Season with salt, sugar and soy sauce.
- Stir in the white pepper and remove from the heat.
- To serve the rice on the pineapple you will need a small bowl, pour a few drops of oil and rub the oil all over the bowl. Fill the cup with the rice and flatten it with the back of a spoon.
- Place the bowl upside down over the pineapple and slowly and gently lift the bowl.
- Sprinkle the top of the rice with crisp-fried shallots, cashew nuts and prawns. Serve immediately.
Method for the Pineapple
- 1 small ripe pineapple
- 2 tablespoons of melted butter
- 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
- Slice the pineapple crosswise.
- In a small bowl mix together butter and brown sugar.
- brush with the mixture on both sides of the pineapple .
- In a large non-stick skillet over high heat place the pineapple slices. Cook turning them once until golden brown on both sides.
- Place each slice of pineapple on a serving plate and then top it with the fried rice.
- Rule number One – The rice must be cold. If you start with sticky, and warm rice the fried rice will turn soggy. You can cook the rice a day ahead.
- You need to have all your ingredients ready because all the ingredients come together very quickly.
- I must tell you a secret, I always buy the crisp-fried shallots, I have tried many times to make them but somehow they always get burnt.
- Roasting pineapple is one of the most delicious ways to eat this fruit. I like to roast my pineapple bite size chunks, this gives the rice a sweeter taste. They are just Yummy!