Seafood congee has been one of the easiest breakfast options and a light lunch. Chaozhou congee restaurants, however, have been sprouting up all throughout China in recent years, making what was once considered a breakfast food suitable for the evening.
This is my failsafe method for quicker chopping with a congee.
I’m using my tried-and-true method to make perfect congee in under 20 minutes. Using frozen, washed, uncooked rice instead of regular dry rice greatly shortens the cooking time required to make congee while still producing the desired thick consistency.
To satisfy your congee craving the next time it strikes, do as I do and reach for a package of frozen rice. If not, it’s a simple step that can be prepared in a few minutes, either before you go to work or the night before. Instead of spending a small fortune, you can have congee at home that rivals that served in fine dining establishments.
OK, so let’s get going!
- 8 ounces of whole shrimp with shells (heads on)
- 4 slices of julienned ginger
- 2 crabs
- 10 cups of water
- 1 cup of frozen white rice
- 1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
- 1/2 cup of chopped scallions
- 3 tablespoons of oil
- 1 tablespoon of Shaoxing wine
- ¼ teaspoon of ground white pepper
- You should wash the shrimp in cold water and remove the heads (but keep the heads). Shrimp can be cleaned by cutting open the rear shell with kitchen shears and then de-veining. Dry the shrimp thoroughly with paper towels, then place them and their heads in the fridge.
- Crabs should have their top shells removed and rinsed clean before usage, as per Bill’s specific directions in our recipe for Cantonese-style Scallion Ginger Crab. After it has been cleaned, divide the crab into four to six pieces and place them in the fridge.
- Now that everything is prepared, we can start cooking! Over medium heat, bring the oil to temperature in a heavy-bottomed soup pot. Cook the shrimp heads in a wok with half of the julienned ginger for a few minutes or until the shrimp heads are crispy and the oil has turned a dark red. Then pour the water in and come to a boil.
- Turn the heat down to low and keep an eye on the mixture as it simmers for ten minutes. Remove the shrimp heads with a slotted spoon after 10 minutes, then turn off the heat.
- Cook for 15 minutes over medium heat after adding the frozen white rice and Shaoxing wine. The congee has to be gently bubbling. Always remember to give the rice an occasional bottom-up stir to keep it from sticking. Add the cleaned shrimp and crab after 15 minutes. When the shrimp and crab are done, stir, cover, and simmer for another 10 minutes.
- Just before serving, sprinkle in some salt, white pepper, cilantro, scallions, and the remaining ginger. Dish out the Seafood Congee right now!