Egg Fried Rice is home-style comfort food for any Chinese family. It’s a dish pulled together by stir-frying leftover rice, eggs and bits and pieces of whatever is in the fridge. Quick, easy and tasty it’s the first dish learnt by many a young cook.
Which is why this video is so hilarious. Uncle Roger, a character created by comedian Nigel Ng, pokes fun at BBC chef, Hersha Patel for making Chinese Fried Rice in a very non-Chinese way.
Uncle Roger is a funny, politically incorrect, thoroughly farcical Chinese ‘uncle.’ Uncle & Auntie are terms of address applied to older adults, not necessarily relations. As an aside … you know you’re truly over the hill when you see a handsome stranger on a bus, he waves you over, gets up and offers you his seat and then insults you by calling you Auntie. As if.
I had a good laugh when I viewed this in July. Although I would never be as distressed as Uncle Roger, I empathized with his reaction to boiling rice in so much water that it had to be drained in a colander.
“What you doing, drain the rice? You killing me, woman. How can you drain rice with a colander, it’s not pasta,”
“…if your rice is too wet, you f**ked up.”
“.. go buy a nice rice cooker.”Uncle Roger
The video went viral. Over nine million Youtube views, ten million on Twitter and multiple spin-offs from similarly affronted Asian cooks.
There was even a BBC interview with Nigel and Hersha on the Egg Fried Rice sensation. Hersha who is a comedian as well as a cook, said that she’d received lots of trolling on her social media pages.
“I thought the video was very funny and Nigel was very funny…. But people started attacking me for not being able to cook rice properly,” she said.
Hersha admitted that the video’s method of cooking rice was not her personal way, it had been supplied by the BBC Food writers. As she said and Nigel agreed, there are many different cultural approaches to cooking rice.
Today a follow-up video was released. Uncle Roger and Hersha meet up and Hersha demonstrates how she cooks rice at home. More fun!
Toronto, Canada. August 2020