This is comfort food Filipino style. A piping hot savory congee loaded with chicken. It’s a popular menu item that’s sold by street vendors and regular restaurants alike.
Nothing beats a bowl of arroz caldo to warm someone up on cold stormy nights.
It’s usually prepared for people suffering from fever and colds. The spiciness and warmth of the congee help to alleviate cold symptoms.
There are several types of congee that is prepared in Filipino households and restaurants: goto, arroz caldo and champorado. Goto is similar to arroz caldo but instead of chicken it uses beef tripe and organs as its meat component. Champorado is chocolate rice porridge. It uses raw chocolate as an ingredient.
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 45 minutes
Good for: 2 – 3 people
- 250 grams chopped chicken breast, skin on
- 2 tablespoon minced ginger
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 medium sized onion, chopped
- 1 cup cooked rice
- 5 cups water or chicken stock
- turmeric powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon cooking oil
- 1 tablespoon chopped shallots or spring onions
- 1 tablespoon roasted chopped garlic or chili garlic oil
- 1 piece sliced century egg
Put cooked rice in a pot and then add 5 cups water or stock. Set to low heat and let boil.
Fry ginger, garlic and onion in a shallow pan. Stir well.
Once onion is translucent, add chicken breast. Stir well.
When chicken is slightly browned remove it from the heat.
Add chicken and spices to the boiling rice. Add a dash of turmeric to add color. You can also us saffron if it is available.
Let boil until rice is very soft and mushy. Arroz caldo should be smooth and similar in consistency to a thick soup.
Stir constantly to prevent the congee from boiling over.
Add water as needed to keep congee to the desired consistency.
Add salt and pepper to desired taste.
Serve while hot in a bowl topped with chopped shallots, roasted garlic and a slice of calamansi or a lemon wedge on the side.
You can use chicken bouillon cubes instead of stock. Just make sure you don’t put too much salt, as the cubes are usually salty. You can also add a hardboiled egg into the congee to add more protein.
You may also substitute quick cooking oatmeal for the cooked rice. Half a cup of uncooked oats will be enough for this recipe.
The usual side dish for arroz caldo or goto is tokwa’t baboy. Tokwa’t Baboy is fried hard tofu and pork that is chopped and serve with a spicy vinegar dip. The recipe for that dish will be posted soon.