Unconventional Fried Rice

So, this is a pretty funny story from way back in my high school days.

I was a senior and I had taken all of my required courses to graduate and I was able to fit in an elective class or two into my schedule.

As you can probably tell, I love to cook🙃. So, I opted for a cooking elective class. The only problem was that there was only one cooking class left that fit my schedule: Cougar Cooking. This was an introductory cooking class for freshmen. It bothered me a tiny bit to be the only senior in that class, but if I wanted to cook, this is what I had to do.


Fast forward to mid semester. We were grouped by tables and each table had a kitchen. The day’s lesson was Fried Rice. It was a cooking day; the best day of all. Each member of our group had a job.

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Someone chopped up vegetables, someone else got the cooking equipment, someone else got the eggs and rice ready, and I was in charge of getting the liquid ingredients; hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and sesame oil.

We started to cook the rice and we followed the steps to a T. Everything was in the pan except for the soy sauce.

I asked my teacher (Mrs. Kapaun- yup, still remember her- LOVED HER) where it was and she said that it was in the clear squirt bottle on the class ingredient cart and that there was only one so all of the groups had to share it.

So, I went over and grabbed the bottle and brought it back to our wok where I eyeballed (daring high school chef, I know😏) about 1/3 cup of it into our rice.

As soon as it hit the wok, my entire group and very VERY soon, the entire room knew that something wasn’t right.

My teacher rushes over to our group and asked what happened, even though she (and I) pretty much already knew.

I handed her the bottle and she said,” I knew it didn’t smell like fried rice!”

Our group just looked at her and waited.

“This is VANILLA EXTRACT, not soy sauce!” 🤯

She started cracking up, so, naturally, we did too.

Then, she took a spoon and tasted it.

“Well… it’s not very good.” 😅

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Talk about a memorable dish😂

 “You guys made Fried Vanilla Rice. That’s a first!”

For the rest of the semester, vanilla rice was our class’ inside joke; Mrs. Kapaun even joked about it in my yearbook. 🤣

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