RISOTTO, Jambalaya, Paella or Biriyani are all worthy contenders for the daddy of all rice dishes but there is only one king in my book and that is Nasi Goreng.

I first encountered it in the kitchens of the Jakarta Hilton when I was private chef to Bryan Adams. We had a late check in and as was Bryan’s way, he was permanently hungry so I dashed of the hotel’s kitchen where I bumped into Michael Jackson’s private chef! He was rustling Michael up a post-gig midnight supper of nasi goring and fried chicken! Well, I was mighty impressed with this tasty dish and he gave me a quick lesson which contained lobster and pork belly. Michael’s chef was apparently a street food vendor in LA when he was discovered and told me he was on $1million a year!

It is effectively an Indonesian spicy fried rice dish using up any leftovers, like meat, chicken, pork, prawns and veggies or a combination of all, always topped with a fried egg and garnished with sliced cucumber and a sprinkling of peanuts, I know, sounds like an odd combination of ingredients, but it really does work resulting in a fresh, spicy, funky, crunchy comfort food but it’s entirely up to you what you add to the rice.

The rice is ideally cooked the day before as it has to be dry to fry properly, fresh cooked rice is too moist and you will end up with a sloppy mess.

A quick tip is to use the microwaveable packets of rice

that work a treat.

The following recipe has a million ingredients but the good news is there are some excellent ready to go nasi pastes available in Asian stores or major supermarkets. Maybe one day someone will pay $1m to fry them some rice!


Time: 20 mins


250g leftover roast chicken;

4 x shallots, peeled and sliced;

Sm handful peas;

Sm handful sweetcorn;

3 x garlic cloves;

1 x red chilli;

1 tbsp brown sugar;

2 tbsp soya sauce;

1 tbsp tomato puree;

400g white long grain rice;

3 x spring onions, finely sliced;

2 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped


0.5 x cucumber, de-seeded and

cut into batons;

1 x red pepper cut in fine strips;

1 red onion fine sliced;

Sm handful beansprouts;

20g peanuts;

2/3 tbsp sweet chilli sauce;

Juice of 1 lime;

Eggs for frying.


1. Cook the rice to the packet’s instructions, drain and leave to cool. Ideally use rice that is a day old.

2. Blend (with a mini blender) two of the shallots, garlic, chilli, sugar, tomato puree and soya until smooth.

3. In a hot pan add some oil, add the sliced shallots, the shredded chicken and the paste, cook off for a couple of minutes, add the cooked rice and fry for 3-4 minutes until heated through, add the spring onions, peas, sweetcorn and coriander.

4. Combine salad ings and dress with sweet chilli sauce and lime juice.

5. Divide rice between plates and top with fried egg and salad on side.