So last February when my dad was in the hospital in London there was a ridiculous snowmaggedon storm that forced my cousin-in-law to house Matt, Vicki, and I in his one bedroom London apartment overnight.
Matt recommended that the three of us go for dinner at the New Kung Fu House for its authentic Szechwan cuisine and after a white knuckled drive in the snow we arrived. I scanned the menu and they had a lot of menu items that I recognized and a few that I didn’t.
Matt: What are you getting?
Me: Fish congee.
Vicki: What’s fish congee?
Me: No idea. We’ll find out.
Waiter/Owner Guy: What can I get you?
Me: Umm…Fish congee?
Waiter/Owner Guy: Do you know what that is?
Sometimes I lie so I don’t look like an idiot.
Luckily I also told the waiter that we were sharing, because the bowl of fish congee was big enough for about 8 people.
Congee is a porridge made when rice is cooked with way too much water for way too long. This particular dish had whitefish in it and flavours of ginger and sesame. You can put pretty much anything into congee though, like beans, tofu, meat, or eggs.
Luckily, I love porridge. It’s warming and comforting. With the chill in my bones from both the snowstorm and my dad’s critical condition, the congee was food therapy. At that moment it was the most amazing thing I had ever eaten in my life.
I love how food can do that.
I bookmarked this recipe the very next day, but haven’t gotten around to making it until last month (exactly a year later).
It was just as good as I remembered and very easy to make since it was done in the slow cooker instead of on the stove.
Makes 6 servings
200g jasmine rice
1″ piece ginger, grated
salt and pepper to taste
2 green onions, sliced
450g (1lb) haddock filets, cut into large cubes
1 T fish sauce
1 T soya sauce
1 T seasame oil
1/2 t white pepper
Marinate the fish in a bowl with the fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, and pepper. Put in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Put the rice, water, ginger, and salt in a slow cooker set on high for 5-6 hours (or low for 8-12 hours). The thickness will be like pancake batter.
Once it is cooked add the marinated fish and let it cook for about 15 minutes.
In a large pot, put the rice and water over high heat. Bring it to a boil and stir in the salt and ginger. Cover and turn the heat to low. Cook for about 2 hours stirring occasionally. The thickness will be like pancake batter, add more water if it looks too thick.
Once it is cooked and the desired consistency achieved, add the fish. Put the lid back on to let the fish cook for about 15 minutes.
Serve the congee in bowls garnished with spring onions.