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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Seafood Congee

Clam Congee

Clam Congee close up

Clam Congee

With the festive period of Christmas and Chinese New Year behind us, business gets serious. No more excuses of slow activities due to the holidays. First quarter budget has to be reviewed, new projects need to be commercialised. Hence, the relentless pursuit of sales can only become more grueling... which means blogging will have to be relegated a lesser priority. I had wishfully planned to keep up with regular postings, having pictures all taken before I hit the road last weekend - thinking that I can write while I am on the flight or when I snuggle up in bed after work. However, I didn't count on being totally blocked out of Blogger,Facebook, Flickr etc.. in China. I knew that they do that and I admit it was an oversight on my part. So now you know why we never get to see blog visitors from China....

This was my last meal at home last weekend. I had seen some clams on sale at the market and had remembered the sweetness clams had imparted to miso soup and the spicy korean tofu soup - hence was inspired to use them for congee - the ultimate comfort food, in my opinion.

However, I have to admit that I probably had bought the wrong clam species to begin with. The variety that is usually used for soup are the smaller species - what the Japanese refer to as Asari.  These bigger ones, I realise would be more suited for frying with garlic and chilli. The congee turned out most satisfying anyway, thanks to the sweetness from the tiny prawns and the smooth mushy texture of the porridge which I had cooked with a combination of glutinous rice and Thai fragrant rice. Pairing this with preserved/pickled Olive Vegetables (榄菜) , black salty fibrous leaves in glass bottles, I succumbed to multiple refills....  ok, got to go. Midsomer Murders is showing on TV and a murder is just about to take place....

Clam Congee 2 (100)
Recipe :

300g             Clams (soaked in salt water for 30mins)
300g             Prawns
100g             Thai fragrant rice
50g               Glutinous rice
2.5 liters        Water / chicken stock (I use water here)

Method :

1. Wash rice with water until water runs clear.
2. Bring water / stock and washed rice to vigoros boil. Allow to boil until rice splits
3. Add clams and continue to boil over medium heat until porridge is cooked and attain a gluey texture. Add more hot water if the mixture becomes too thick.
4. Add prawns and boil over low heat for a few minutes until prawns are cooked. Season with salt to taste.
5. Serve garnished with spring onions and preserved Olive vegetables. (I under season the congee with salt as the Olive vegetables will be salty)

23 comments:

BlackTulip said...

Your looks even more yummy! :))

Ju (The Little Teochew) said...

I can imagine how sweet it must taste. Lovely bowl of goodness, and beautiful shots! Have a restful Sunday.

Trissa said...

No wonder I also don't get visitors from China! The seafood congee looks so comforting - you are right - it is the ultimate in comfort food. I rarely see this with seafood though - but it is an excellent idea!

Angie's Recipes said...

mmmm...a mouthwatering seafood congee! I like to have a fried dough stick with the congee!

MaryMoh said...

Looks very delicious. I love this type of congee. Very welcoming in this cold weather.

wendyywy said...

Hmmm... May I suggest u add in the clams at the same time u add ur prawns. Overcooked clams are rubbery. They will be just nice when they open up their shells.

Shirley @ Kokken69 said...

Wendy, indeed I have contemplated that but I also wanted the sweetness from clam... overall, it did not turn out too rubbery, I was somewhat relieved...phew!

La Table De Nana said...

I have never had congee.. beau!

I hope you will find time to do everything..I know it is hard..But you are doing it so well..Continued success..in all:)

Happy Homebaker said...

I was lucky that I was still able to access bloggger and flickr when I was in China last Dec, only Youtube and Facebook were blocked then. Blogger and flickr was blocked sometime early Feb I think. We may visit Beijing again this June, I wonder how am I to move around the place if Google map is no longer accessible :(

There are two types of clams available at the wet market. I made the exact same mistake of getting the bigger ones when I first bought them to cook Heng Hwa noodles ;') The bigger ones have got 'white meat' whereas the smaller ones have 'red meat'. The stall owner asked me which type I wanted, and I was ignorant enough to choose the 'white meat', lolz.
Thanks so much for sharing such a yummy congee, will definitely include it in my regular lunch menu!

Sonia (Nasi Lemak Lover) said...

anything with clamp, must be very sweet!

Shirley @ Kokken69 said...

HHB, Thanks for sharing :) Now I know what type of clams to look out for...

Ellie (Almost Bourdain) said...

I like how to add glutinous rice to the porridge. Is that the secret to a rich and smooth porridge? Love your photopraghs!

Anh said...

I am so happy to find you. This is the way my Vietnamese grandmother makes her congee! :) Love your blog

tigerfish said...

Regardless the type of clams, I bet your congee must have that signature "unami" taste from seafood. Right? Yum!

Mrs Multitasker said...

Shirley, it looks wonderful =)
In my family's home we do seafood porridge with heaps of dried scallop and dried clam. Also very delish!

pierre said...

this rice looks so good and the photo is superb !! good job ! Pierre from Paris

thecoffeesnob said...

What I wouldn't give for this, Shirley, on this cold, dark night in the office.

I usually use dried scallops and cuttlefish bone to make the stock of my porridge but clams sound so much more delicious!

Stella said...

Oh, how I love a bowl of congee! Yours looks really great-making me want shrimp too...

HungryC said...

It's so hot in KL now, and all I want to do is drink rather than eat. Your congee looks so appetising, and I love the sweetness of seafood in congee. I shd really try this

wendyywy said...

Actually clams don't need to be boiled for long for it to release it's sweetness. Even when I do a simple quick stir fry with clams, the gravy is very sweet and has a strong clammy taste to it.

Try cooking clams in beer:)I've done that before. Topped with lots of spring onions :)

Kathy said...

Delicious. Heart-warming. Definitely a comfort food. yum yum yum :D

petite nyonya said...

What a lovely and tempting bowl of congee. Yum yum!!!!!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Ahh you know I never really thought about why I don't get visitors from China but it makes sense. Crazy huh!

Meanwhile your congee looks like just the thing I need on this chilly, windy day :D

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