Jook - also known as congee - is eaten in Chinese communities around the world. Despite its odd name, it has wide-ranging appeal and has become one of the author's favorites. The dish takes many guises in restaurants but can easily be made at home. Use it as a side dish with chicken, pork, or beef. You can also stir in fish, shrimp, chicken, or cooked egg to make it a main dish. While glutinous sushi rice gives the dish a sticky-creamy texture, Arborio retains more of its bite after the long cooking time for added texture.
Place rice in a sieve, and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Combine rice, 5 cups water, and broth; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. Add salt and ginger. Cover and cook 1 hour or until mixture has a porridgelike consistency, stirring occasionally. Divide rice mixture among 6 plates. Top each serving with peanuts, onions, and bacon.
This is so simple and so delicious. I find that 90 minutes of cooking is plenty. I make it the night before, then reheat in the microwave. Any topping is great--a fried or poached egg cooked with a runny yolk brings everything together. Leftover chicken, or just a chicken thigh or two sliced and quickly cooked, a few shrimp--really anything makes a great topping. We also douse it with Siracha. Along with a stir-fried Asian vegetable, you have a great lunch or dinner.
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