Congee for the Soul

I’ve been thinking about starting a cooking blog for a long time and just never got around to it…too busy watching reruns of Barefoot Contessa and Gilmore Girls, reading cookbooks and other cooking blogs I guess. I resolved this year to drink more water and my husband quickly informed me I had set the bar too low for myself. So, I’m hoping on taking you all on this journey with me and my tiny kitchen.

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Congee, with toppings. Yum!

My husband went to bed last night with a fever of 101, which later today shot up to 104 (needless to say he is immobilized in bed, in a semi-conscious state). So, today was the perfect day for congee. For those who don’t know, congee is like chicken soup for Chinese people. For as long as I remember, whenever I was sick with a flu or stomach virus or anything else, my mom would make congee (which I actually hated as a child and only developed an appreciation for more recently). It follows then that when I came home to a bed-ridden husband this afternoon, I took right to making congee. And actually, I’m embarrassed to admit…it was my first time…ever. But I took to the internet and found a couple of recipes that I made into a hybrid and low and behold, congee!! I never knew it was so easy…

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After about 30 minutes of cooking
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After over an hour of cooking

Congee (Serves 4-6)
3/4 cup of rice, rinsed
10 cups of chicken stock or water (I used a combination and threw in some chicken bones from the freezer)
1 inch piece of ginger, sliced
salt to taste

*Toppings (pick and choose):
Scallions, thinly sliced
Nori rice seasoning (such as: https://www.amazon.com/JFC-Nori-Furikake-Seasoning-Ounce/dp/B0006G5KEY)
Soy sauce or fish sauce
Sesame oil
White pepper
Fried shallots
Preserved egg
Pickled vegetables

  1. Combine rinsed rice, stock and/or water, chicken bones if using and sliced ginger in a large pot. Bring to boil. Stir pot, scraping any rice stuck on bottom. Turn down to simmer. Cook for 2.5 to 3 hours, stirring every 15 minutes or so to ensure the rice is not stuck to the bottom of the pot.
  2. Taste and add a bit of salt to taste. I added about 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. Congee might taste bland but will be further seasoned by addition of toppings.
  3. Add toppings.

*Notes: I used scallions, a few drops of fish sauce, a splash of sesame oil, a pinch of white pepper, 1 tbsp nori seasoning, 1 tbsp scallions, and 1 tbsp of fried shallots.

Enjoy!

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