I struggled with the title of this post – How My Kids Learned to Love Vegetables would have been good, Veggie Pork Fried Rice for Whole Foods Newport Beach Grand Opening was appropriate but too long, How to Make Fried Rice With No Soy Sauce – nah, Family Favorite: Vegetable Pork Fried Rice just didn’t roll off the tongue. In the end, it’s College Girl’s 21st birthday and even though she is thousands of miles away studying (probably not tonight) in Japan – this was her favorite dish, morning, noon or night, ever since she was a wee toddler just learning about real food. Happy Birthday, Chloe! Hope you don’t mind that I substituted Chinese peas for broccoli
I don’t add soy sauce while cooking the rice because introducing any wet ingredients can make your fried rice soggy or clumpy, and who wants that. In fact, I don’t use soy sauce at all any more because of its high sodium content (even low-sodium is too high), instead the sesame oil and condiments like furikake and gomasio with seaweed, sesame seeds, and bonito flakes add umami flavor and texture. You can purchase furikake and gomasio at Asian markets or, for one stop shopping, I visit the international aisle at Whole Foods Market where they have a wide selection of ingredients commonly used in Asian cooking, and many that aren’t so common.
I generally shop at Whole Foods at Bella Terra in Huntington Beach when I’m looking for fresh sustainable fish or responsibly raised meats, an artisan cheese, or high quality and organic produce that’s out of the ordinary, like the lobster mushrooms I bought on Saturday, along with fresh Alaskan King Salmon on special fo $12.99 a pound, but I am looking forward to the Grand Opening of Whole Foods Newport Beach.
Newport and surrounding area residents are super excited about the Grand Opening of Whole Foods at Fashion Island on September 19th. Like their store in Huntington, which reflects the surf and sand culture of Huntington Beach, Whole Foods Newport Beach will reflect the unique culture and healthy, active, outdoor lifestyle of Newport with a lively coastal flair and a food-forward shopping experience that you would expect from Whole Foods and fashion-forward Fashion Island. The Newport Beach store is the fifth Whole Foods in Orange County and marks the debut of The Tea Hive, a fusion café and tea bar where customers will be able to choose green, black or oolong tea in almost any imaginable form – whether frozen, sparkling, iced or steamed. Specialty drinks such as the Pomarita, a refreshing blend of pomegranate and tart lime with green tea, and Chocolate Chai, black tea, spiced chai, chocolate and cinnamon., are made in martini shakers by “Tea Tenders.” While you’re sipping your cocktail you can pair it with one of the natural fusion entrees, such as bowls and wraps using local and organic products.
Whole Foods Newport Beach also introduces the Back Bay Tavern with seating for 150 and a rotating selection of 24 craft beers on tap, plus wine and spirits, along with an extensive menu that includes beef, seafood, vegetarian and vegan meals. A smaller “Express” beer and wine bar with 12 beers on tap will be available at the front of the store for quicker service. I can’t wait to check it out on the 19th!
Veggie Pork Fried Rice
1 cup chopped pork tenderloin*
2 tablespoons BBQ sauce
3 cups cooked white rice*
1 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup Chinese peas, stringed and cut diagonally
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon red chile flakes
1 cup frozen peas, prepared according to package directions
Condiments: furikaki , sesame seeds, gomai
*Notes: Pork tenderloin is just as lean as skinless chicken breast and can be grilled, baked or roasted for a quick dinner. I usually make two and purposely slightly undercook one tenderloin, knowing that I’ll be making twice-cooked pork for a stir fry or my family’s favorite fried rice for another meal. Fried rice is best made with dry rice, not moist, sticky rice. I usually cook the rice the day before and refrigerate it, uncovered overnight. Leftover rice from Chinese takeout also works.
1. For the twice cooked pork, cut leftover pork tenderloin into bite size pieces, place in a ramekin or bowl, add the BBQ sauce and mix to coat the meat. Set aside.
2. Prepare all the ingredients for your mise en place and have the rice ready in a bowl. I can be a little haphazard in the kitchen and don’t always do this, but it is important when making stir fries or fried rice because the cooking goes quickly.
3. Spray your wok or a large sauté with cooking spray and heat over medium- high heat. Add the pork and cook for 2 minutes, tossing or stirring. Remove meat and set aside.
4. Add the canola and sesame oil to the wok. Heat over med-high heat until the oil begins to smoke. Add the rice, turn up the heat to quickly brown the rice, stirring constantly. Remove the rice to a bowl. Lower the heat to med-high, add a little more oil if necessary before adding the carrots to the wok. Cook for 3-4 minutes, tossing or stirring constantly. Add the chile flakes, Chinese peas, and green onions, cook for another minute. Return the rice to the wok, stir to combine the ingredients and cook for another minute. Move the rice mixture to make space to pour the eggs into. Use a spoon to turn and quickly cook the eggs. Mix the eggs into the fried rice along with the peas (make sure the peas are well drained – you don’t want soggy rice).
Like their stores in Tustin, Huntington Beach, Laguna Niguel, and Laguna Beach, the Newport Beach store’s commitment to locally-sourced products will be evident by its offerings from more than 100 local vendors and farmers from nearby Orange, San Diego and Los Angeles counties including: Homegrown Meats, Backyard Bees (with products in both grocery and Whole Body), Archi’s Acres, Stehly, Suzies, Go Green, Carlsbad Aquafarm, Ale Smith, South Coast Winery and Fallbrook Winery.
If you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind experience join me at the new Whole Foods Market Newport Beach when it opens on Sept. 19 at 9.a.m., 415 Newport Center Drive in Fashion Island.
For additional information on Whole Foods Market’s Newport Beach store, please visit www.wholefoodsmarket.com or to stay updated on grand opening events and activities, follow Whole Foods Market Newport Beach on Facebook and on Whole Foods Newport Beach on Twitter.
Meanwhile, snap a photo capturing what you love about Newport Beach and upload it to Whole Foods Newport Beach Sweepstakes for a chance to win a Private Party Suite for 10 at the Newport Hyatt Jazz Series concert on October 12th and Whole Foods Market gift cards. I did – this is quintessential Newport, don’t you think?
Hope your week is full of happiness and sunshine
Disclosure: I was compensated for this post by Whole Foods, but the recipe and opinions are my own.