This Caribbean inspired vegetarian pineapple fried rice is a wonderful way to use leftover rice you may have in the fridge and it must be noted that it is not a traditional Caribbean dish. However with use of wonderful Caribbean flavors you’ll find that you’ll purposely make extra rice just so you can have this dish on the regular.
4 cups cooked rice (day old)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 bird’s eye pepper (or 1/4 scotch bonnet)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3 cloves garlic (crushed)
1 large onion (diced)
1 bell pepper (1/2 yellow + 1/2 red)
1/4 teaspoon grated ginger
1/2 carrot (diced finely)
1 stalk celery (diced finely)
1.5 cups pineapple (1/4 inch pieces)
1 tablespoon veg oil
1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 teaspoon curry powder
optional – toasted coconut flakes – topping.
Notes: If you’re using freshly cooked rice (or leftover), may I suggest that you allow it to cool in the fridge for a few hours. This will give you a lovely grainy finish to the rich dish. I used parboiled brown rice, but you’re free to use any rice you like.
Start by prepping all your vegetables as this is a very quick dish to put together. Next heat the vegetable oil on a medium heat in a deep pot (I used a non stick pot to cut back on the amount of oil I use) and add the diced onion and garlic. Reduce the heat to low and let that cook for a couple minutes. Then add the diced celery, carrot and bell peppers and allow it to cook for 3 minutes (low heat).
Toss in the bird’s eye pepper (whole), grate in the ginger, add the black pepper, salt and curry.. raise the heat to medium and stir well. Cook for 2 minutes to toast the curry powder to bring out all the flavors of the spices in the curry powder. Then add the diced pineapple (you can use drained canned pineapple if you want) along with the soy sauce, sesame oil and hoisin sauce. Stir well.
Raise your heat to med/high and toss in the rice (note – if the rice was in the fridge as I suggested, take it out about 15 minutes before you start this dish) and mix well. The idea here is to warm the rice through and help it take on that wonderful flavor base we created. Let it cook for about 4-6 minutes, then top with the chopped scallion and turn off the heat. Serve!
You’ll notice that I didn’t use much salt as my rice was already cooked in salt and the soy sauce will contain much salt. Also notice that I didn’t cut or break the birds eye pepper as I wanted the flavor without the raw heat. But you can certainly cut them finely for that added kick. This is best served warm so your guests will really appreciate the combination of flavors we created with this tasty Caribbean inspired Vegetarian pineapple fried rice. A great way to add extra flavors and texture is to top the finished rice with some toasted shredded coconut.