Bai Cha - Common Varieties

Common Varieties

  • Hokkien or Fujian fried rice: This variation of Chinese fried rice is from the Fujian region of China; it has a thick sauce poured and mixed over it. The sauce can include mushrooms, meat, vegetables, etc.
  • Bai cha: A Khmer variation of fried rice, it includes diced Chinese sausage, garlic, soy sauce, and herbs usually eaten with pork.
  • Canton (or Mui Fan): A Cantonese dish of fried rice, typically served with a thick gravy poured on it.
  • Cha-Han (チャーハン) or Yakimeshi (焼き飯): This Chinese fried rice is suited to Japanese tastes, sometimes adding katsuobushi' for flavor. 
  • Yeung chow (or Yangzhou) fried rice: This dish consisting of generous portions of shrimp and scrambled egg, along with barbecued pork. This is the most popular fried rice served in Chinese restaurants, commonly referred to simply as "special fried rice" or "house fried rice".
  • Yuan yang fried rice: Topped with two different types of sauce, it typically has a savory white sauce on one half, and a red tomato-based sauce on the other half. Elaborated versions use the sauce to make a taichi ("yin-yang") symbol.
  • Burmese fried rice (ထမင်း‌ကြော်, htamin gyaw) normally uses Burmese fragrant rice which is short grain (rounder and shorter). A popular variety is a very plain version consisting of rice, boiled peas, onions, garlic and dark soy sauce. An accompanying condiment would be ngapi kyaw (fried fish paste with shredded flakes) and fresh cucumber strips mixed with chopped onions, green chili and vinegar.
  • Thai fried rice (ข้าวผัด, khao pad or khao phad): The flavor of this version is radically different from that of common fried rice, mostly due to the use of jasmine rice, and it has various additions not found in Chinese versions. It is usually served with sliced cucumber and prik nam pla, a spicy sauce made of Thai chili, fish sauce and chopped garlic.
  • American fried rice (ข้าวผัดอเมริกัน, Khao pad Amerigan): This style of fried rice is actually a Thai invention using hot dogs, fried chicken, eggs as side dishes or mixed into rice fried with ketchup. Apparently, this was served to GIs during the Vietnam war,, but now has become very popular and commonplace all throughout Thailand. The Malaysian counterpart, substituting pork with chicken, is called nasi goreng USA.
  • Nasi goreng: An Indonesian and Malay version of fried rice, the main difference compared to fried rice is it is cooked with sweet soy sauce (kecap manis). It is often accompanied by additional items such as a fried egg, fried chicken, satay, and condiments such as sambal, acar, and krupuk. It is served in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and most of the neighboring countries, and is popular in the Netherlands.
  • Chaufa: A popular version of fried rice in Peru, it was brought to Peru by Asian immigrants; it combines the traditional Chinese recipe with a distinct touch of South American flavor. Chaulafan is the version in Ecuador; it was also brought by Asian immigrants and served for Westerners in small Chinese restaurants, chifas, which serve cheap Chinese food. This dish is characterized by using a kind of soy sauce made mostly of burnt sugar. Ingredients are usually grilled pork, beef, chicken, or shrimp.
  • Kimchi bokkeumbap or kimchi fried rice (김치볶음밥): A popular variety of fried rice, it is prepared with Korean pickled cabbage (kimchi) and a variable list of other ingredients. A wide range of fried rice dishes are frequently prepared in Korean cuisine, often with whichever ingredients are handy.
  • Sinangag or garlic fried rice: A Filipino version, rice is added to stir-fried garlic and then seasoned with salt and pepper. It is a common, everyday breakfast dish. Vegetables, meats, and other ingredients may be added but it is generally left bare, with just the garlic, pepper, and salt to flavor it, because any other additional ingredients' flavors may interfere with the flavor of the viand eaten with the fried rice. Sinangag is mostly paired with "drier" viands, and very rarely with soupier ones. It is often associated with breakfast meals as the rice used for making sinangag is normally leftover rice (recycled from the previous evening), with the texture of the rice having set to a firmer consistency, freshly-cooked rice not being ideal for making fried rice as it results in a soggy texture. Sinangag is a constant component of the breakfast staple tapsilog, and its derivatives.
  • Curry fried rice: standard fried rice mixed with curry powder for a spicier flavor
  • Sambal fried rice: Found in Singapore, this is a variation of fried rice made with sambal, a condiment based on chilis and belachan, derived from Indonesian and Malay influences.
  • Hawaiian fried rice: A common style of fried rice in Hawaii, it usually contains egg, green onions, peas, cubed carrots, and either Portuguese sausage or Spam or both, sometimes available with kimchi added. Normally, it is cooked in sesame oil.
  • Arroz Frito (Cuban fried rice): Very similar to "special fried rice", this version can be found alongside typical criollo dishes in many Cuban restaurants. This dish features ham, grilled pork, shrimp, chicken, and eggs, along with a variety of vegetables. Some restaurants add lechón (Cuban-style suckling pig), lobster tails, and/or crab. Chinese Cubans are responsible for the dish's introduction.
  • Omelet rice: also known as omurice in Japanese or nasi pattaya in Malay, it is fried rice wrapped inside the egg omelet. The fried rice is generally mixed with a variety of vegetables and meat. Ketchup is added.

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