Saturday, October 17, 2009


This is jook, pronounced similar to "choke" but not quite. This was the Chinese comfort food of my childhood; it is made with rice and broth, topped with sesame oil, chopped green onions, and shiitake mushrooms. Sometimes my mom would put cooked chicken in it, or dried fish, or preserved crunchy turnip bits. I had never made it myself before but I made some tonight and it turned out pretty much as I remembered it from my childhood. I don't know why I've never made it before; it was so easy.

Basic jook recipe:

1 cup short-grain rice
10 cups stock of your choice (I used 8 cups chicken stock and 2 cups water)

Combine in a big pot; bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Top with a splash of sesame oil, chopped green onions, and reconstituted dried shiitake mushrooms, diced with tough stems removed.

Some people add soy sauce, but I recommend you taste it first, because I found it salty enough as it was. Other people like to add chilli sauce.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

lentil soup with roasted kale

I highly recommend this roasted kale recipe. The temperature here dropped very quickly and very harshly this past weekend, so I harvested the last surviving remnants of the kale from the garden--it was the perfect way to use it rather than let it go to waste. It made a crispy, tasty topping for lentil soup.