Woke up late the other day, so had to snag breakfast off the street. It happens sometimes.
I just wanted something simple, and I knew of a stall that had American breakfasts. Really, I just wanted an egg and toast, so I asked for one American breakfast.
Back in our cantina, an officemate enquired about my choice and I told her.
“Ah, have you ever had American fried rice?” She asked.
“American fried rice? What’s that?” I opened my container. It contained a sunny side up egg lying atop a hot dog, a slice of ham-type meat and a bed of orange rice.
“Hey, hey, you got it!” She exclaimed.
“What makes it American?” I asked, lifting up the egg to peer under the hood.
She giggled behind her hand. “Raisins and ketchup!”
“Really?!” And indeed, the rice was a rather eerie orange color and chocked full of rehydrated raisins and onions.
As every morning should begin with a stimulating conversation, we discussed the possible origins of American fried rice. We decided that it had to have come from the war and the influx of naive palettes and maybe a shipment of dried grapes, since grapes are not grown in the region.
We figured that regular fried rice with dried shrimps or salted crab wasn’t moving, so some creative chef decided to give ‘em what they’re used to, and a new dish was born.
What did it taste like? It tasted remarkably like Rice-a-Roni. That San Francisco treat. Ding ding ding.