Monday, January 19, 2009

Comfort Week - Food

Sherri, over at the lovely Frenchy's Finds blog, which is both eye candy and substance, is sponsoring a Comfort Week, that will culminate in a prize: three bars of her Birch Bark Soap soaps. Please check Sherrie's post for the other participants, and feel free to sign up too by letting her know on her blog.

The theme for Monday is food. I have a lot of food that I consider comfort food, even those I didn't grow up with (such as eggplant borani). But congee (jook in Chinese) has to be one of my all-time favorite. I don't have a photo of ours, but here's picture of one of my favorite types of congee:If you've never had preserved duck egg (also known as thousand year old egg, and the smell will tell you why) before, don't order this. The above image is from the wonderful, wonderful little book:Dh doesn't make this variation, because even though the sweet man has learned how to make it and love it, and that's pretty amazing for a non-Chinese guy, he prefers not to eat preserved duck eggs. So, he usually makes it with a chicken or turkey carcass for the base broth.

Here's a basic recipe for congee; as I mentioned, we use chicken or turkey broth instead of water, which makes it richer (but also renders it non-vegetarian). We toss in the shredded meats from the carcass that was used to make the stock, but you can put in any meat, veggie, salty fermented bean curd (because I'm sure everyone has a jar of that sitting around their kitchen), etc, that you want.

"He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home." ~ Johann von Goethe