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I will be the first to admit I seldom eat food that we normally associate and categorize loosely as "Chinese". But porridge is one comfort dish that I could hardly say no to, on days where I am just too sick and tired to taste and to chew, and on days that are particularly cold and chilly. As many of you would be aware, there are two different types of porridge.

There is the plain type that you eat along with side dishes. Here, the rice grains remain fairly distinct and the porridge is watery. Sometimes you find peanuts or sweet potato chunks cooked with it. The side dishes are often preserved and canned, thus quite salty and the plain porridge is a really suitable vehicle to add balance. I never really fancy this type of porridge though.

Then there is "jook", where the rice grains are cooked down to disintegrate into a massive pool of white, sticky gruel. How does "jook" become so smooth, do you know? My mother tells me it is a combination of techniques and tricks. Slow cooking short grain rice is one, adding a bit of quick cooking oatmeal (just a handful) is another. I find these little tips interesting and it is rather sad that the younger generation generally have little interest to learn how to cook. Imagine that all these nuggets of information will be lost forever.

No prizes for knowing that I prefer "jook" anytime. For a quick fix, Crystal Jade Kitchen solves my problem. Here is a bowl of fish slice porridge with preserved egg and parsley.

Three of my favourite ingredients for porridge, all in one. It would be slightly over the top, if I had to say so myself, but it would have been the bomb if it had a raw egg cracked in as well. A freshly prepared bowl of porridge may look boring initially but a major fun for me at least, is digging into the bowl and trying to find the hidden treasures within. Concurrently, I will the porridge to cool down so I could start eating. A burnt mouth is. not. cool.

There is a lot of personalisation in a simple dish like porridge. I think that is what I like about it as well. Not only do I get to choose what sort of ingredients goes into the base porridge, I could also top it off the way I like it. My usual toppings are: a small dash of sesame oil and a lot of white pepper. Soy sauce is optional, more applicable if I had a raw egg. The "yow char kwai", I could do without.

Where do you go to satisfy that porridge fix? How do you like your porridge done your way?


JY said…
LOL fish & century egg porridge is my fave at CJ as well!
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Shu Ping said…

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imp said…
century egg porridge with a sprinkling of spring onions. perhaps with a dash of very good light soy sauce. my favorite.
Anonymous said…
et said…
charcoal jook at Ah Chang, I think its at tiong poh road, they are almost all hours now.. it's really good. Must try the raw fish slice as well :)

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