Vietnamese Chicken and Rice Congee
Vietnamese chicken and rice congee turns up in Vietnamese households morning, noon, and night. It’s also a must dish to serve at the feast in Southern Vietnam. It’s easy to find this food at almost restaurants and food stalls in Vietnam because this food wins the heart of all people. Vietnamese chicken and rice congee is not only delicious but also healthy. It’s a comfort dish of many Vietnamese people when it’s cold or rainy, especially when they’re sick. Many foreigners have tried this food and fall in love with it. I would like to say this is one of the tastiest foods in Vietnam.
The ingredients are garden chicken, high class long-grain rice, cabbage, persicaria odorata (Vietnamese coriander), ginger, lime (or vinegar) and spices (salt, fish sauce, sugar, chili, black pepper). The rice should be pan toasted. Then the chicken, rice and ginger are put into a big pot and bring to boil. The congee may be cooked to many different stages and textures depending on the recipes. But the rice must completely break down but still evident and the chicken is tender but not mushy. Chopped green onion is put into the pot before stopping cooking.
The chicken is removed from the pot and shredded finely. The cook uses the shredded chicken, shredded cabbage and Vietnamese coriander to make sweet and sour salad. The sauce of salad is made from lime juice or vinegar, sugar, salt and fish sauce. After putting shredded cabbage, coriander, shredded chicken and sauce into a big bowl, the cook mixes them until being seasoned well. The salad couldn’t be lack of crushed peanuts. Some prefer adding shredded and cut onion to the salad. We can also use shredded banana blossoms or young banana trees to make the chicken salad. All of them are flavorful salad to eat with congee.
The congee is served in a medium bowl with a spoon. Black pepper is sprinkled onto the congee. A plate of salad and a small plate of salt and chili are placed on the side. Just use spoon to ladle the congee and put the salad into the spoon by chopsticks. What’s next? Let’s tuck in. You can also eat the chicken and cabbage salad with mix of salt and chili like most of Vietnamese people do.
Whenever I got sick, my mum would make chicken rice porridge to nourish me. It’s one of the most beautiful memories in my life. It was the only dish I ate as a sick child. Now it’s my turn to make it for my husband and children.
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