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In her book, Essentials of Asian Cuisine: Fundamentals and Favorite Recipes, cookbook author Corinne Trang describes congee as a “way to stretch a meal in times of need.” Typically eaten for breakfast in China and other parts of Asia, this comforting recipe, which first appeared alongside Sushma Subramanian’s 2012 story “Feed a Fever,” is often mixed with meat, poultry, or seafood and gets a jolt of flavor from its garnish of scallions, chiles, and shallots.

The ease and affordability of this dish makes it a comforting sick-day staple.

Congee (Rice Porridge) Congee
Eaten for breakfast in China and other parts of Asia, where it is called zhōu, this comforting porridge, which first appeared alongside Sushma Subramanian’s 2012 story “Feed a Fever,” is often mixed with fish or meat, and gets a jolt of flavor from its garnish of scallions, chiles, and shallots.
Yield: serves 4
Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • ½ cups long-grain white rice
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • Chinese chile oil, crispy shallots (store-bought or homemade), red bird’s eye chiles, and thinly sliced scallions, for garnish

Instructions

  1. In a sieve, rinse the rice under cold running water. Drain thoroughly, then transfer to a medium Dutch oven. Cover with 8 cups of cool water, sprinkle in the salt, then bring to a boil over high heat. Turn heat to medium-low, and cook, partially covered and stirring occasionally, until the rice takes on the consistency of porridge, about 1½ hours.
  2. When ready to serve, divide the congee between 4 bowls and top each with the chile oil, crispy shallots, chiles, and scallions.

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