• Vietnamese-Style Frog Legs with Kimchi Fried Rice


Cross-Referencing Asia

By Andrew Zimmern

While fusion is typically a dirty F word, I promise this food is tasty and beautiful.

Vietnamese-Style Frog Legs with Kim Chee Fried Rice


Frog Legs

  • 2 pounds jumbo frogs legs
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 3 egg whites, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup corn starch
  • 5 cups peanut oil
  • 1 bunch each mint and basil
  • 2 tablespoons reserved oil (see recipe)
  • 12 scallions, cut in 2-inch lengths
  • 3 pieces lemon grass, sliced
  • 1 cup of finely sliced fresh ginger ‘needles’
  • 1 tablespoon coarse grind sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 5 dried red chiles

Kimchi Fried Rice

  • 1  1/2 cups short-grain Asian rice
  • 2 cups water
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup peanut oil
  • 1 cup sliced roast pork
  • 1 cup sliced Chinese-style sausage
  • One 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 dried red chile
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 ounces mung bean sprouts
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1  1/2 cups kimchi, coarsely chopped and drained, liquid reserved
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions, plus more for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil


Frogs Legs

Clean and dry the frog legs. Toss with kosher salt and let sit for 15 minutes refrigerated. Press gently in a dry towel to remove moisture.

Heat peanut oil to 375 over high heat in a large wok.

Toss frog in egg whites, then dredge in corn starch. Shake free of any excess cornstarch and fry until crisp in several batches.

Next, fry the basil and mint leaves to garnish and dry on a paper towel, reserve.

Carefully tip off the oil, leaving 2 tablespoons behind, and increase the heat to high under the wok. When smoking, add the scallions, lemon grass, ginger and the chiles. Toss quickly, scorching just a tad.

Add the frog back to the wok, toss to coat, adding the sea salt, pepper and sugar as you rotate the food across the wok surface.

Toss and serve quickly with the fried rice. I like garnishing this dish with fried basil and fried mint leaves

Kimchi Fried Rice



In a medium saucepan, cover the rice with the water and bring to a boil. Add a pinch of salt, cover and cook over low heat until the water is absorbed and the rice is just tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for 20 minutes. Spread the rice on a large rimmed baking sheet and let cool, then cover and refrigerate until cold, about 30 minutes.

In a very large skillet, heat the peanut oil until shimmering. Add the sliced pork and sausage and stir-fry over high heat for 2 minutes. Add the ginger, chile and garlic and stir-fry until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the bean sprouts and stir-fry for 30 seconds, then push the mixture to one side of the skillet. Add the egg to the other side of the skillet and scramble just until set, about 1 minute.

Add the cold rice to the skillet and stir-fry over high heat until coated and hot, about 2 minutes. Add the kimchi, scallions, soy sauce and sesame oil and stir-fry until hot, 1 to 2 minutes. Spoon the fried rice into bowls, garnish with thinly sliced scallions and serve.

MAKE AHEAD The cooked rice can be refrigerated overnight.

Photograph by Madeleine Hill. 

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