If you follow my culinary adventures @mangerseul, you might have noticed that my posts dropped off in July 2018.
A lot changed, a lot happened.
It was difficult, heartbreaking, tragic.
All in all, 2018 was a very tough year.
But it’s officially 2019, and I’ve spent a lot of time over the last 6 months healing, breathing, living, mediating; and I’m ready to make it up.
Inspiration for the Manger Seul Revival
These first days of 2019 have been rainy ones here in San Francisco. So I decided to start off the year with a #mangerseul revival that would be ultra comforting in multifaceted ways.
Rice porridge is a common comfort food that my mother, grandmothers, and aunties have made throughout my life (& for generations before I’m sure). Using varied meat, seafood, and vegetable stocks, a common theme to them all is that they were slowly cooked, full of love to nourish and ginger to warm the body & soul.
On the other hand, one of my favourite things to eat in one of my favourite SF-fog-escapes – Los Angeles – is the savory long-cooked chicken & rice porridge at SQIRL in Silver Lake. (Go there if you haven’t. Order the savory porridge. Share a ricotta toast too. OMG.)
So, from those inspirations, tonight I put together a savory long-cooked chicken, ginger & brown rice porridge with tuscan kale sautéed with rosemary roasted garlic in coconut oil, a tomato sauce cooked down in himalayan salt ghee, fresh avocado, green onion, a poached egg & a sprinkling of Maldon sea salt flakes & nutritional yeast.
I really just winged this one, but y’all I even surprised myself – it was really freakin’ delicious!
There’s a big pot here now (I’m not really sure how to cook porridge, stews, etc. for just one serving); so if I know & love you, come over, leave happy.
A loose recipe for a delicious meal!
The following are general instructions for how I made this batch (sorry it’s not a really well thought out recipe at this point – I completely winged it; though I’m sure I’ll do many more specific & prescriptive fancy rice porridges this winter!). If you’d like a better idea of what I’m describing below, there’ll be an Instagram story @mangerseul (called “January 2019 🍜”) with some photos & videos of what this all looks like.
- I actually started cooking down the base of the porridge last night when I couldn’t sleep #yay. I was using fresh chicken thighs that I wanted to cook for so long enough that it’d become melt-off-the-bones shredded chicken (without having to actually shred it).
- Combine 3 cups of already-steamed/cooked brown rice with a quart of unsalted chicken broth, 3 chicken thighs, 3 cups of water, and a ~6 inch long (perhaps 3/4 inch in diameter) piece of fresh ginger (peeled & smashed with a meat cleaver or mallet).
- Simmer that down on low heat for a few hours, stirring occasionally so that the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom.
- Add water as needed for your desired consistency (I like my rice porridge more soupy) and salt & pepper to taste. (*FWIW I was up late last night feeling a little heartbroken so there might’ve been additional salty teardrops flavouring this base… hah or nah?)
- Once the chicken thighs are at the aforementioned consistency, remove the bones, and mix in the chicken.
- In a separate pan, sauté together ~1 tablespoon of coconut oil, 4 cups of chopped organic tuscan kale and your pre-roasted & peeled bulb of garlic (I like to roast my garlic by: 1.) cutting the top off of a bulb of garlic, putting it on a piece of aluminum foil, drizzling with extra virgin olive oil, adding fresh rosemary and a teaspoon of butter, 2) wrapping that all in aluminum foil all around the bulb, 3) throwing it in the oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees or until the garlic is soft and can be squeezed out of its peel into a paste-like consistency). Remove the sautéed garlicky kale from your pan.
- In that same pan with all the garlicky remnants, add ~1 tablespoon of himalayan salt infused ghee & 4 medium-sized coarsely chopped tomatoes & ~1 tablespoon of chili pepper oil (I use a Burmese kind with actual chili flakes in it that my cousin’s grandfather likes). Cook down until it’s a thickened tomato sauce.
- Stir the tomato sauce into the brown rice porridge.
- To serve, top the porridge with some of the sautéed kale, sliced avocado, a poached egg, & a sprinkling of Maldon sea salt flakes and nutritional yeast.
I think I’d like to try adding different grains – maybe quinoa or chia – for some more texture next time. I really do love rice porridge though – it’s such a tasty & comforting breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Let me know if you have any tips or if you try it out! Also, keep an eye out for some extra #mangerseul posts as I try to make up for those few missed months. Always looking for new inspiration, so send me ideas too!