Hai-hsian Chou

Huang Jung-chin, wife of a fishery owner near Tainan, serves this soup as a warm and filling lunch.

Yield: serves 6-8


  • 1 cup medium-grain rice, thoroughly rinsed
  • 1 lb. milkfish or gray mullet filets (with skin on), cut crosswise into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled
  • 1 tsp. demerara sugar
  • Salt
  • 1 12 lb. shucked small oysters
  • 13 cup freeze-dried shallots
  • 12 bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped


  1. Put rice into a small pot. Add 1 1⁄2 cups cold water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Remove pot from heat and allow to rest, covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff rice.
  2. Bring 10 cups water to a boil in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Add fish and cook until just opaque, about 1 minute. Add rice, oysters, shallots, and cilantro and gently stir. Remove pot from heat, cover and allow to rest for 20-30 minutes. Adjust seasonings. Divide soup between 6-8 bowls.