Domo Arigato, y’all—Mississippi Hibachi

From the moment I opened the box to my Blackstone and started putting that sucker together, I promised my son I’d try to make his second favorite meal in the world: chicken fried rice (it’s second only to his mom’s Fettuccine Alfredo).

He’s the kind of kid that if you mention anything to him, he’ll remember until the end of time. Since I’d never tried cooking fried rice before, I did what any parent of substance would do—I put him off and ignored him for as long as I could.

Since I work in a school district, I knew that I’d have some time coming up with the holiday break, so I set my eyes on the weekend before Christmas as my hibachi date.

I did some research on it before I pulled the trigger. I knew that you had to boil the rice as usual prior to cooking fried rice, but I didn’t know it had a process after that. From what I found, it’s best to cook your rice the day before you plan on putting on your flattop. It needs to be dry in order for it to be the best fried rice.

I ended up cooking it the day of, and it still was perfectly fine. I cooked it around lunch time. At first, I put it in a bowl and stuck it in the refrigerator. But it just didn’t seem like the rice would dry out properly (or quickly) in a bowl. I went back and spread the rice out on a baking sheet and placed it back in the refrigerator. It sat for about 6 hours and worked perfectly fine.

My post about Smash Burgers had plenty of grill outs behind it. That was probably the 4th or 5th time I’d cooked those, so I had a feel of what I was doing. This post chronicles my rookie-effort towards hibachi. And because of that, I got plenty of before and after pics, but my brain was totally engaged on cooking up that fried rice and snapping some pics wasn’t really at the forefront of my mind. But, I’ve included what I did remember to snap.

Ingredients & Instructions

This goes a long way. If you are sharing this meal with a significant other, I hope you have the kind of relationship where you can pig out in front of each other and still stay madly in love.

  • 5 cups cooked rice, dried and chilled
  • 2-3 chicken breasts
  • 8-12 ounce steak of choice
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 squash
  • ½ red onion
  • ½ white onion diced
  • Cooked with vegetable oil (and sesame oil for flavor)
  • Add anything else you want. You can snag some frozen peas and carrots from the frozen food aisle and cook this with your veggies. You don’t even have to thaw them out. Trust me, they’ll get cooked.

Before you get going, go ahead a pre-cut your chicken and steak. If you’re going to use shrimp and it’s not peeled yet, go ahead and peel your shrimp. By pre-cutting your chicken and your steak, you cut down on the amount of time it takes to cook the proteins. You don’t need to worry about your chicken or steak not getting cooked through. By the time you’re done with everything, it’ll be cooked.

I read where one guy doesn’t add salt or pepper to any of his hibachi work, allowing for the eater to add salt or pepper to their own liking.

I added salt and pepper, so take that for what it’s worth.

Light it Up

Again, because I’m quite the trend follower, I cooked on a Blackstone. I’ll sing the praises of this flattop grill all day long without one ounce of shame. It’s like my unashamed man-crush on Zac Efron or ability to jam out to some Whitney.

I had two zones going on my 28″ two burner. The first zone was on the right, and I cooked my proteins first. When it was time to turn over the pieces of steak and chicken, I turned them all over and ended up mixing them together. Like I said, don’t worry about them not being cooked. They were cooked. I salted and peppered the meat as well as dashed it with some soy sauce.

When it was time to move to the next part, I moved the meat to the left zone which was set on a low/medium heat to stay warm.

I threw half a stick of butter on the right side, cut it up with my spatula, and spread out the golden goodness.

I cracked four eggs and let them start frying. I heard once that not everyone can crack an egg with one hand. I can, but I have a feeling that’s where my savant-ness of the culinary arts stops.

I also put all my veggies in the butter and spread it out, squirting some vegetable oil on top of the pile. Veggies do not take long to cook, so I moved them to the warming section next to the meat and turned my attention to the rice.

The butter was nice and ready to be joined in holy matrimony with the rice, so who was I to keep these two apart?

Once the rice was on the right side of the Blackstone, I added some soy sauce as well as some salt and pepper.

Using two spatulas, I mixed everything together. I also turned all the burners to high. Once it looked like the fried rice was what the West has grown to love over the past two decades (go ahead, feel old), I turned off the burners and kept flipping and mixing.

It made a lot—quite a lot. I put it in an aluminum half-pan and served it up to the fam.

The first critic I aimed for was my 6-year-old. He said it was great. He said that own his own. I didn’t have to ask. I figured that was a win.

I snagged some pink sauce from Kroger. It’s like BBQ sauce—why make it when you can just buy some that’s going to taste better than your efforts anyway?

I’ll do this again for sure. It was a “messy cook” but an easy clean up. And, like I’ve said, it was an easy cook. Once you get going, you won’t have much time to do anything else. You’re in the zone, pretty much.

Now all I need to do is work on my Japanese egg roll trick and try out an onion volcano. Once I get that, I can overcharge suburbanites with a smile on my face.

So, friends ありがとうございました

arigato gozaimasu.

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