Xo Fried Rice


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    and makes 150 g cheat’s xo sauce

Appears in

My Asian Kitchen

My Asian Kitchen

By Jennifer Joyce

Published 2018

  • About

A recent invention, XO is a crazy-good sauce of dried seafood, chilli, garlic, soy and ham. The Hong Kong chef who created it christened it ‘XO’, which means ‘extra old’, borrowing the name from a luxury cognac. There are more complicated ways of producing it, but this is a pared-down version. Traditionally XO includes dried scallops, but they’re impossible to get hold of unless you visit Chinatown.

Prep 10 minutes
Cook 40 minutes


  • 200 g 7 oz) sugar snap peas
  • 175 g 6 oz) baby corn, sliced
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cm ( inch) ginger, chopped
  • 400 g 14 oz) jasmine or basmati rice, cooked al dente, or 6 cups cooked rice, cooled
  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce

Cheat’s Xo Sauce

  • 2 tbsp dried shrimp
  • 100 g ( oz) prosciutto, chopped
  • 4 finger-length red chillies, chopped
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped ginger
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 3 large shallots, chopped
  • 1 tbsp palm or soft brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 90 ml 3 fl oz) peanut (groundnut) oil
  • sriracha or other hot chilli sauce, to serve


The night before cooking, place the dried shrimp in a bowl, cover with water and soak overnight.

Place the drained dried shrimp in a food processor and blend until fine. Add in all of the other XO ingredients, except the oil, and blend again until you have a paste.

Heat a frying pan and add the peanut oil. Pour in the XO sauce and cook over a low heat for 30 minutes until it turns a deep-brown colour and has a sticky consistency. Remove from the heat and let cool.

Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Add the sugar snaps and baby corn and blanch for 1 minute. Drain and rinse under cold water. Dry on a tea towel.

Heat a large wok. Add 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil. Pour the eggs in a roll around the pan so you get a thin layer. Roughly chop up with a spatula and then place in a bowl. Pour the remaining oil into the pan and add the onion and ginger. Sauté over medium heat until softened, about 3 minutes.

Add 75 g ( oz) of the XO sauce (refrigerate the rest), the cold rice, baby corn, sugar snap peas and the oyster and soy sauces. Keep stir-frying for 5 minutes until everything is warmed through.

Serve the fried rice with a red chilli sauce like sriracha. This dish also works nicely alongside the Grilled sticky char sui pork.