I live in the suburbs which means we have a few obligatory Chinese restaurants, and when we first moved here we tried them all. Over the years our taste buds changed and what once tasted like a decent order of fried rice, was now a sad sideshow of oily rice with tiny specs of veggies, and maybe a handful of farm-raised, watery baby shrimp. But what do you expect at $4 an order?
Fried rice can’t be that hard to make, right? It’s not, but as with all meals: the quality of your ingredients matters. Not just for taste, but also your health. Chinese food is not a terrible thing, but cheap Chinese food is. Cheap food in general is such a misunderstood bargain. Don’t ask yourself why good food is so expensive. Instead find out why processed and fast food is so cheap.
After we said good-bye to Chinese takeout, we never looked back. Instead, now we look forward to when my husband makes his shrimp fried rice. We always make extra so the kids can take it to school the next day (warm, in a thermos), and I’ll have it for leftovers-lunch as well. By making your own, you get to decide on the rice-to-veggie ratio and the taste and quality of your shrimp. Farm raised seafood is not a good choice, because just like large scale beef or chicken production, it’s industrialized and relies on a cheap and unnatural diet for the animals, hormone and/or antibiotic use. You are what you eat ate.
Give this fried rice a try, and I bet you’ll feel better than after the usual cheap takeout version. In the 45 minutes that you wait for that order you might as well put on some music and go make your own. Good food is worth the effort. Your body and taste buds will thank you for it.