Sticky Rice, Nuo Mai Fan, is made with glutinous rice, a short grain sweet rice that is often used for making Sushi or Thai Sticky Rice. When I was a kid, my Mom and Dad mostly made See Ew Fan (Soy Sauce Rice) with long grain rice. We ate this a lot – well, okay, every morning. Every evening after washing the dishes and cleaning the kitchen from dinner, my Mother stood in the corner of the kitchen, defatting and chopping meat and washing rice for the next mornings See Ew Fan, which was a simple pilaf-like dish made on top of the stove with rice, chopped meat, ginger, garlic, and soy sauce. In the morning, my Father turned it on and went running. When I was in high school, I scooped a bowl and ate it while blow-drying my gorgeous locks.
On special occasions – Thanksgiving, Family Gatherings, and on Weekends – they would make Nuo Mai Fan, which in our home was a much fancier version of what we ate on a daily basis.
Nuo Mai Fan has a stickier consistency than plain rice and contains Chinese Sausage, which was, for me and my brothers, the defining feature of the dish. The stickiness is determined by the proportion of glutinous sweet rice to “regular” rice. Recipes range from 100% glutinous sweet rice (typical of Dim Sum dishes) to half sweet rice and half long or medium grain rice. When I was just out of college and short on funds, I used one part sweet to two parts “regular” rice just to save money.
After my brother said, ” You can make Sticky Rice without sticky rice, but you can’t make it without Chinese Sausage,” I started making the dish with Calrose, a medium grain rice. The recipe I share is neither Nuo Mai Fan nor Fried Rice. Instead, it’s a Chinese flavor inspired rice pilaf.
Chinese Sausage and Rice Pilaf – Recipe
1/4 lb. ground pork (about 1/2 cup)
3 Tablespoons Soy Sauce, divided
3 cups Calrose rice (if you are using the cups that come with a rice cooker, use 4)
1/2 cup chopped shallot or red onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 slices ginger, about 2″ in diameter, use and discard before eating
1 cup shredded carrots (it much easier if you buy it already shredded)
2 cups frozen corn (or one 15 oz can, drained)
4 Chinese Sausages – 2 chopped fine, and 2 chopped course (this is my preference for texture – all the same size is fine too)
2 Tablespoons Hoisin Sauce
1 Tablespoon Oyster Sauce (or Chinese Mushroom Sauce, or Vietnamese Fish Sauce)
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1 Tablespoon Sesame Oil
1 bunch green onion, chopped
8 large eggs – poached or fried (optional, but this is my favorite part)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce
Mix 1 Tablespoon of Soy Sauce with the pork and let sit for about 10- 15 minutes while you prep the other ingredients.
Wash and cook the rice according to package instructions.
Prep ingredients – chop and ready.
While the rice is cooking, heat oil (medium high heat) in a wok or large sauté pan until a drop of water sizzles and sauté shallots until tender, about 2 minutes.
Add pork and ginger, garlic to onions and sauté until cooked, about 3 minutes. Move the meat around while cooking so it crumbles.
Add carrots, corn, sausage, Hoisin Sauce, Oyster Sauce, 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce, black pepper. Mix and lower heat to medium. Sauté until carrots are soft and all ingredients are mixed together and hot.
Lower heat to medium low and add Sesame Oil and stir to combine. Add cooked rice and mix all the ingredients together. The meat sauce should be integrated into the rice and the color of the rice will turn tan. Pull out the ginger and discard. Add the green onion and mix well. Salt and pepper to taste.
Top each serving with a poached or fried egg and drizzle Sriracha over egg as desired.
15 minute prep, 35 minute cook time, serves 6- 8