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Crispy chilli rice with fried egg recipe

Use up leftover rice with this tasty recipe.

Crispy chilli rice from Second Helpings (Facundo Bustamante/PA)

“Fried rice is delicious, but crispy rice is an even better way to deploy cold leftovers,” says Sue Quinn, author of Second Helpings.

“It’s made by scorching rice in a hot pan until the grains turn crunchy and deeply tasty. In many cuisines, crispy rice is treasured; it features in the Persian dish tahdig, for example, and Spanish paella (where the prized crispy bits at the bottom of the pan command their own name – socarrat).

“Here, I’ve spiked cold rice with chilli sauce and tomato purée, and then seared it in a thin layer. The recipe serves two, but for more than this, fry the rice in batches. If there is too much in the pan it will steam rather than crisp up.”

Crispy chilli rice with fried egg and greens


(Serves 2)

  • 260g cold cooked rice

  • 3-4tbsp sriracha sauce or chilli crisp oil (depending on how spicy you want your rice)

  • 1½tbsp soy sauce

  • 2tbsp tomato purée

  • 2tsp sesame oil, plus extra for drizzling

  • 2tbsp vegetable oil, for frying

  • 1 spring onion, finely sliced

  • Fried eggs, to serve

  • Steamed greens, such as pak choi, to serve


1. Mix together in a bowl all the rice ingredients except the vegetable oil and spring onion. Make sure all the rice grains are well coated.

2. Heat a large heavy frying pan, non-stick ideally, until very hot. Add the vegetable oil and swirl to cover the base.

3. Add the rice, spread it out over the base of the pan in a thin layer and flatten with a spatula. Fry over a medium-high heat for two minutes without disturbing. Drizzle a little sesame oil over the rice and flip chunks of it over – it should be burnished and crisp in parts. Fry for another two minutes, pressing down again with the spatula.

4. Flip the rice again. It should be a mixture of crisp and not so crisp grains. If this hasn’t happened yet, keep frying, flipping and pressing but be careful not to overcook the rice – you don’t want it dry and hard. Serve the rice hot, with a fried egg, greens and spring onion sprinkled on top.


Second Helpings by Sue Quinn is published by Quadrille, priced £18.99. Photography by Facundo Bustamante. Available now


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