I’ve vowed not to buy any more meat until October. I’m also trying to use up what’s left in my cupboard before leaving halls forever next weekend. This resulted in last night’s dinner disaster. You’d think egg-fried rice which I’ve made approximately 4 billion times this year would be a piece of cake. You’d be wrong. Last night was less egg-fried rice, and more a kind of vegetable rice stew. If you fancy making yourself feel a bit queasy, feel free to follow the recipe below (enough for 2, or for one if you enjoy it so much you want leftovers the next day!).
You will need:
A wooden spoon
Brown rice (don’t measure it, just whack in far more than you could possibly ever eat)
Vegetable stock powder (again, as much as possible)
Chicken stock powder (roughly the same amount as the veg stock)
Button mushrooms (lots)
A liberal quantity of frozen peas
Chopped red and green pepper
Half a courgette (diced)
2 medium-large eggs
A bottle of soy sauce.
1. Pour vast quantity of the brown rice into the saucepan. Run under the cold water tap until you think there’s enough in there.
2. Put rice on mid-heat on the hob, and leave for 30 minutes whilst you go and watch iPlayer in your flatmate’s bed.
3. Return to the rice. See that it hasn’t come to the boil. Throw in a shed load of veg stock powder. Plus a bit more.
4. Stir. Watch the stock begin to turn the water/rice mix sticky.
5. Taste it. Realise it tastes and smells like that revolting vegetable soup they forced you to eat in nursery. Pour in further shed load of chicken stock powder (despite previously swearing off meat). Stir.
6. Realise you have made a horrible, congealed rice gravy. Notice that you have now passed the point where you could’ve drained off the excess water. Try to boil it off instead.
7. Watch the rice gravy begin to stick to the bottom of the saucepan.
8. Meanwhile…. heat about 2 tablespoons of oil in the wok. Bring to a heat where you are at risk of being scolded when it splashes back as you drop the vegetables in.
9. Drop the vegetables in. Watch for hot oil splashback! When you inevitably feel the pain of a splash of hot oil on your skin, run under cold tap until the pain subsides. Try not to flood the kitchen, despite the fact the sink is full of a fortnight’s worth of washing up.
10. Stir veg. Notice that none of it has softened yet, and that the peas are still frozen. Ignore this fact, because you are bloody hungry and have better things to be doing.
11. Stir again, adding so much soy sauce that the peas begin to float in an oil-and-soy puddle.
12. Add the rice gravy to the wok. Stir. Add yet more soy sauce. Stir. Taste. Try not to cry.
13. Crack one egg into the mixture. Stir. Don’t bother checking if it’s cooked yet.
14. Add the second egg. This time, don’t dump it in in one go, but let the egg white trickle out around the wok, and try and split the yolk with the egg shell, in turn, getting egg shell into the wok. Leave and watch the egg white turn from clear to, well, white. Stir.
15. Taste again. You really should’ve checked those peas were cooked first shouldn’t you? Woops. Oh well, too late. Does it need some more soy sauce? Why the hell not. Does it need some salt and pepper? HELL NO! The veg stock has put your monthly allowance of salt in there for you.
16. Slop onto a plate in the way Mr Bumble’s cooks dispensed gruel to poor Oliver Twist in the workhouse (don’t worry, you won’t be wanting more!)
17. TUCK IN!
18. Show off your dinner to others. Watch them laugh. Hear them refuse to try it. Watch their eyes light up as your face contorts in revulsion. Eventually persuade them to try some. Watch them nudge it around the plate before eventually opening wide. Hear that it is ‘not great, but still kinda edible’. YES, another culinary success!
19. Wake up the next morning feeling rather ill. Wonder why. Remember last night’s dinner.
20. Vow to never go there again.