it’s filipino food friday! today i’m making arroz caldo – a chicken and rice porridge usually made when you’re not feeling well. (yep, this includes hangovers too!)
just about every asian country has it’s own version of rice porridge. you might be more familiar with the chinese version, congee. in indonesia, it is called bubur. japan – okayu. in the philippines, we call rice porridge lugaw. (looh-gow) and all it is, is rice cooked for an extended amount of time in broth until it becomes the consistency of porridge. when you add chicken to the mix, we call it arroz caldo.
i didn’t always like arroz caldo. in fact, i had developed an aversion to it growing up. every time we had it, it was like staring into a bowl of surprises i didn’t want. to me, those surprises were chunks of raw ginger that would sneak their way onto my spoon. don’t get me wrong. i like ginger. but the bite and texture of the ginger was always a little off putting to me. my mom somehow found out that “i didn’t like her arroz caldo” and stopped adding ginger when she made it for me. (bless her heart!) these days, i grate the ginger and let it melt into the broth. all the ginger goodness without the bite.
to add some texture to the dish i fry up chicken skins. (because let’s be honest, it’s basically baby food without the toppings!) you can also add a poached or boiled egg to the mix, fried garlic, scallions and lime or calamansi juice.
ignore my nail polish! *quick tip* chicken skins are easiest to crisp up in a non-stick pan.
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1-2 tbsp ginger, grated or minced
- 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small onion or shallot, minced
- 1 cup short grain rice
- 8 cups chicken stock
- 1 tbsp fish sauce (preferably filipino fish sauce)
- 2 cups shredded chicken (a rotisserie makes this easy or 4 poached bone in chicken thighs)
- sliced scallions
- fried chicken skins (remove the skin from the rotisserie or from the poached chicken and fry in a non-stick pan until crispy)
- boiled or poached egg
- fried garlic (chop up some garlic and fry in some oil until lightly brown)
- lime or calamansi
- in a large pot, heat up the coconut oil over medium heat
- stir in the ginger, garlic and onion and saute until fragrant
- stir in the rice
- add 6 cups of chicken stock and the fish sauce
- bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to low
- simmer for about an hour, stirring every fifteen minutes or so
- after an hour, the rice will be cooked down and the mixture will be very thick
- stir in the remaining 2 cups of chicken stock and the shredded chicken
- you can add in more water or chicken stock if you'd like a soupier texture
- top with any assortment of sliced scallions, fried chicken skins, boiled or poached egg, fried garlic and a nice squeeze of lime
stay tuned for the next filipino food friday!