Nick loves Thai Pineapple Fried Rice, the singular thing on any thai menu that jumps out and calls out to his taste buds. It is a shame then that ever since moving to Sydney he has been searching in vain for a decent bowl of pineapple fried rice. Strange as it may seem, not all thai joints offer this simple delicacy. I remember back in Singapore we had dinner at a beautiful Thai restaurant called ‘Parkway Thai’ in Marine Parade. Not only did the gorgeous decor of gold figurines, bamboo lights and artistically cut fruit centerpieces delight us but we were thoroughly impressed with the friendly and sweet waitresses all clad in traditional garb. And then their pineapple fried rice served in a scooped out pineapple just exceeded all our expectations. I would love to go there the next time I am in Singapore and I am sure Nick wouldn’t mind a taste of their fantastic fried rice.
So today with a craving for this very simple yet special dish, I cooked a batch of fragrant jasmine rice early in the morning to be used later. Then I browsed Vatcharin Bhumichitr’s "Vatch’s Thai Street Food" for inspiration and did indeed find a recipe for ‘Fried Rice With Pineapple’ that called for dried black fungus mushrooms. Not entirely satisfied with the list of ingredients I persevered and delved into the "Australian Women’s Weekly Thai" and "World Food Thailand by Judy Williams". After taking comfort in the fact that I could safely substitute the exotic mushroom with fish sauce without compromising the taste much, I was ready to begin. I assembled ingredients in two lots, one for the flavour and the other for texture. After seasoning my wok and smoking it on high heat, I had the pineapple fried rice ready in just under 10 minutes. Now isn’t that simple?
THAI PINEAPPLE FRIED RICE
[Serves 4/Prep Time : 1 hour/Cook Time : 10 mins]
2 cups fragrant jasmine rice [I use the golden umbrella brand]
2 1/2 cups water
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
1 tbsp chicken stock powder
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup frozen prawn meat
1 cup finely diced pineapple pieces
1 medium white onion, diced
1/4 cup finely sliced garlic chives
1/4 cup finely sliced spring onions
1/4 cup freshly chopped coriander leaves
1 tsp dried red chilli flakes
2 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
1 tbsp oil
Soak rice in water for 1/2 hour. Add chicken stock, ginger garlic paste and olive oil. Cook in a rice cooker. Set aside to cool. Smoke a wok on high heat. Heat oil. Add onions and prawns and stir fry for 2-3 minutes till prawns are cooked and onions start turning golden. Add pineapple pieces, stir-frying for another 2 minutes till some of the pieces are singed around the edges. Add cooled rice, soy sauce, fish sauce, salt, sugar and white pepper. Stir-fry for 2 minutes, mixing well. Add garlic chives, spring onions, coriander and chilli flakes. Stir-fry for another minute. Remove from heat and serve hot.