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Saturday, 17 March 2007


All this week I've been surrounded by A LOT of snotty human beings
- and I don't mean the cantankerous kind.
Dudes! Stay at home and keep your skuzzy germs to yourself!
That's what sick leave is for!
Miraculously, I have managed to ward off illness by taking a mixture
of zinc and vitamin C each morning.
For those of you who have succumbed and joined the snotty ones,
get someone to make this for you. You'll feel better straight away. I promise.

Congee (Chinese porridge)
Comfy rating: four stars

I make this with the congee setting on my rice cooker.
If you don't have one of these, get one NOW. Or just make it in a pot like this:

What you need
1 cup white rice, rinsed
6 cups water
(sometimes I add a stock cube for more flavour)
White pepper

Put rice and water in a large deep saucepan, bring to boil.
Cover (leave a little gap for steam to get through) and simmer on the lowest heat setting until all rice grains are broken and has the consistency of porridge.
Add in salt or stock cube and mix well.
Serve porridge in a soup bowl or a deep dish with chopped spring onions and fried shallots (from Chinese grocer)
Sprinkle white pepper over it.
Serves 2 to 3

In Hong Kong I ate congee for breakfast with Chinese donuts. YUM.

You can serve this dish instead of rice with steamed Chinese greens, stir-fried tofu, eggplant etc.. it's up to you.
There are also lots of great condiments that go well with this, like fermented tofu and thousand year old egg (if you are feeling brave), Chinese black olive paste and pickles. For a Japanese vibe you could add Ume (pickled plum).

Congee is a grain based, usually rice, medicinal porridge served for centuries in traditional Chinese homes. It is used to promote good health and long life. It is used specifically to help the body recover from various ailments. Congee is an excellent whole-grain hot breakfast alternative.

Benefits of a congee breakfast
It can jump start your digestive system. Its long cooking time breaks down the grain, making it very easy to digest and assimilate, providing your body with the nutrients it needs. It also builds energy and enhances metabolism.

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