Meatless Monday: Fried Rice with Asparagus, Corn and Mushrooms

By: Lauren Miyashiro

Meatless Monday is a global movement, a way of life. It’s not a campaign to turn everyone in the world vegetarian or vegan; in fact, many involved are meat-lovers. Eating less meat has been proven to reduce the risk of disease, curb obesity and has important environmental impacts, too. Will you join us in giving up meat, just for one day a week?

Recreating your favorite takeout dishes can be a much healthier option than ordering delivery. Take for instance fried rice. I’d be scared to know the nutritional information from my go-to Chinese takeout joint. Making it at home, I control how much oil goes into the wok.

You don’t need a recipe for fried rice — you can throw in just about anything. But Ching’s recipe for Egg, Baby Asparagus, Corn and Shimeji Mushroom Fried Rice takes the classic takeout dish to another level. It's loaded with flavor, even sans pork. The addition of asparagus and mushrooms brings an earthy element to the meal. Finely diced red chile brings just the right amount of heat and corn adds a sweet crunch. By cooking the eggs separately from the rice, you get fluffy pieces of egg which make for the best of bites.

SCRAMBLED EGGS:
3 large free-range or organic eggs, lightly beaten
1 pinch sea salt
1 pinch ground white pepper
1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil
FRIED RICE:
2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

4 1/3 ounces baby asparagus spears, tips sliced 3/4 inch, stems sliced into 1/3-inch slices

1 ear fresh sweet corn, kernels removed, core 2 3/4 ounces shimeji mushrooms, individual stems separated

1 3/4 pounds cooked jasmine rice, cold
3 tablespoons low-sodium light soy sauce
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 red chile, deseeded and finely chopped

For the eggs: Lightly beat the eggs in a bowl and sprinkle with the salt and pepper.

Heat a wok over medium heat and add the peanut oil. Pour in the beaten eggs and stir to lightly scramble until the eggs have turned golden and are still fluffy. Take off the heat and set aside.

For the fried rice: Reheat the wok over high heat until smoke starts to rise, and then add the peanut oil. Add the garlic and stir quickly for a few seconds, then stir in the asparagus and corn and cook until the asparagus starts to turn a deeper green and the corn starts to turn golden yellow, 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and toss together. Stir in the rice and toss to combine for 1 to 2 minutes. Season with the soy sauce, stir and mix well.

Return the eggs to the wok, season with the sesame oil and pepper and give it a few more stirs. Transfer to a large serving plate and garnish with chiles. Serve immediately.

More Meatless Chinese Takeout Ideas:
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