Leftover Makeovers : Gingered Fried Rice Soup with Greens

Gingered Fried Rice Soup with Greens

Why throw out leftovers when you can recreate them into a delicious new dish?  This is so basic that I had second thoughts about posting it.  While raising a large active family reinventing leftovers were part of the norm.  So here’s one very basic makeover from cooked brown rice.

With one pot of cooked brown rice, you can make 3 different meals…the first night we had freshly cooked brown rice with a vegetable stir fry side.  The next time I used the rice was to make vegetable fried rice with chicken and we had it for breakfast which actually kept us satisfied for the entire morning without craving a mid-morning snack.  The last time was to use up our leftover fried rice in Gingered Fried Rice Soup with Greens.

Vegetable and Chicken Fried RiceI use the term “fried” loosely. In 2 tablespoons of olive oil, saute finely chopped onion, celery, and carrot and /or shredded cabbage, lightly salt them, and when they are translucent,  add the chilled leftover rice.    Fold it into the sautéed veggies, creating a mosaic of colors.IMG_1649

Always use chilled rice when making fried rice, it turns out the best texture.  Typically, it’s made with one part finely chopped onion to two parts chopped celery with the option of adding more vegetables, garlic and ginger.   A protein is another great addition, that being  an egg (or 2) scrambled or made into a pancake and chopped small, leftover cooked chicken or cubed and sautéed tofu.  The most recent Fried Rice creation included some finely chopped cooked chicken.


After all ingredients are combined in a 12 inch cast iron skillet,  season it lightly with tamari soy sauce. After 2 minutes of gently folding that into the rice mixture, I turn off the flame. Serve with toasted sesame seeds on top or finely chopped scallions.

curly element

At noon on a 16 degree day, I brewed up a cozy pot of Gingered Fried Rice Soup with Greens, for lunch.  It was delicious. No kidding. Try it next time you have leftovers.

Gingered Fried Rice Soup with Greens (serves 4-6)2 tablespoons olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon minced ginger
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 onion finely chopped
3 carrots chopped (1 1/2 cups)
3 cups loosely packed leftover vegetable chicken fried rice
4 cups Imagine’s Not Chicken Broth
2 cups chopped fresh swiss chard
1/2 cup frozen peas
Hot Chili Sesame oilDirections:
In a medium soup pot, heat olive oil and saute the onion, garlic and ginger. When onion is translucent, add the carrots. If your fried rice doesn’t have celery in it, also add 3 stalks of finely chopped celery. Saute vegetables until fragrant, about 5 minutes longer. Add the leftover fried rice, a quart of Not Chicken Broth (or whatever you have on hand kind of broth )and bring to a boil. Turn heat down, cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Add chopped greens, cook until wilted, and add the peas. Let simmer 5 more minutes. Season to taste with sea salt. To serve, pass around the Hot Chili Sesame Oil to top the soup off.

Delicious and hearty on a cold winter day

Happy Cooking!


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