Teochew Porridge | KitchenTigress

Teochew Porridge

Making good teochew porridge is very easy. It starts with the choice of rice: new is better than old.

New rice is rice that has just been harvested and has a high starch content whilst old rice has less. If it doesn't say 'new' on the packaging, that means it's old. It's not as good as new but doable if you aren't a porridge fanatic.
Unless you're a peasant who has to work in the fields after your meal, a quarter cup of rice per person would be sufficient.

For the first quarter cup, add about 650 ml water and for each subsequent quarter cup, add 250-350 ml. Bring the water to a boil, then continue boiling on high heat for about 15 minutes.

The porridge must be kept at a furious, rolling boil. Otherwise, it'd be thin and watery. Make sure it doesn't boil over when it foams by lowering the heat slightly if necessary.

After boiling for about 15 minutes, when the water turns slightly starchy, the porridge is ready.

Old rice may need a few more minutes and a bit more water. The rice grains continue to absorb water and the porridge thickens after the heat is turned off. So don't let the porridge rest too long unless you prefer it thicker, cooler and softer.

There are a thousand and one dishes that go well with Teochew porridge. One of the great classics is Chai Poh (Salted Turnips) Omelette. Check out my next post for an omelette that's thick, fluffy, not too salty and not too oily.

I grew up eating piping hot porridge for lunch and breakfast almost everyday.

For me, porridge is the best comfort food bar none. A good bowl of hot porridge energizes the body, lifts the spirit, and warms the heart.

(Recipe for 2 persons)

½ cup rice, washed
950 ml water

1. Bring water to a boil and add to rice. Continue to boil on high heat. Porridge is ready after about 15 minutes when water is slightly starchy. Old rice would need a few more minutes and a bit more water.

The ratio of water to rice changes with the amount of rice being cooked. Here's a rough guide:
¼ cup rice - 650 ml water
½ cup rice - 950 ml water
¾ cup rice - 1,250 ml water
1 cup rice - 1,550 ml water
1¼ cup rice - 1,900 ml water