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This version of jook is fully loaded, but feel free to dial it back using what you already have on hand.

Thomas Girard

Servings: 4

Ginger chicken broth

1 whole chicken

1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced into rounds

4 green onions, washed

3 tablespoons shaoxing wine (can substitute medium-dry sherry)

10 cups cold water

Carrot julienne pickles

2 medium-sized carrots, peeled and sliced into julienne

1/2 cup water

1/3 cup Japanese vinegar

1/4 teaspoon fleur de sel

1/2 teaspoon sugar

Sesame cucumber salad

1 medium sized cucumber, washed and sliced thinly

1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel

1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

Chili soy and other toppings

2 bird’s eye chilies, sliced into rounds

6 tablespoons light soy sauce (or tamari)

**

4 pieces baby bok choy, washed and quartered

4 pieces Chinese sausage, sliced thinly and fried in a non-stick pan until crispy (can substitute with 6 slices of bacon)

1/2 cup toasted, salted peanuts, chopped

1/2 cup fried shallots (Chinese grocers carry already fried shallots but you can buy raw shallots and fry them yourself)

1 cup fresh coriander leaves, washed and spun dry

4 green onions, sliced finely on the bias

Toasted sesame oil

Fish sauce

Prepare all the toppings in little dishes so each person can dress their individual bowl of jook as they see fit.

Jook

1 cup long grain white rice

8 cups ginger chicken broth

2 teaspoons fine sea salt (can substitute soy or tamari)

Pinch ground white pepper

1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced into rounds

Shredded chicken meat

2 eggs, lightly beaten

Method

Ginger chicken broth

Bring all ingredients to a simmer over high heat, but be careful not to let it boil. Reduce to medium-low and simmer for 25 minutes, skimming the surface to remove any scum that rises. Remove the chicken from the pot and allow to cool on a cutting board until it can be handled. Remove as much meat as possible from the bones and set aside before adding the bones and skin back to the broth pot to continue cooking. Simmer and skim for 40 minutes longer. Strain through a fine mesh sieve and discard the solids. Cool completely and store in the fridge until ready to use.

Shred the chicken meat that was set aside earlier into bite-sized pieces. Store in the fridge until ready to use.

Can be made up to two days in advance.

Carrot julienne pickles

Mix all together in a small bowl and allow to sit for 30 minutes to an hour to marinate before consuming. Store in the fridge until ready to use. Can be made ahead.

Sesame cucumber salad

Mix the cucumber slices and salt together in a small strainer and place over a small bowl. Allow the mixture to sit for 30 minutes. Squeeze gently to remove any excess liquid.

Toss the cucumber with the toasted sesame oil and sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

Chili soy

Mix the chilies and soy together. Can be served immediately.

Other toppings

Prepare all the toppings in little dishes so each person can dress their individual bowl of jook as they see fit.

Jook

Bring the rice, broth, salt, white pepper and ginger slices up to a lively simmer over medium-high heat stirring occasionally until the rice has broken down completely and the mixture becomes creamy. This should take approximately 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Stir more frequently for the last half an hour or so to avoid sticking. The resulting porridge should have the consistency of a loose oatmeal, but feel free to add a little more water if you prefer a soupier congee. Stir in the shredded chicken and heat through completely. Stir in the eggs and cook for 30 seconds longer. Remove the ginger slices and discard. Adjust seasoning with salt (or soy or tamari) and white pepper if necessary. Spoon into four bowls and serve immediately alongside all the various salads and toppings

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