Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Making Rice Porridge Interesting

For Asian families, besides rice cereals, rice porridge is the main dish that we serve our babies once they are able to accept semi-solid foods. They will usually have rice porridge for lunch and dinner until other main meals are included in their menu as they grow. Example of other main meals are rice with side dishes, noodle soup, stir-fry rice vermicelli and pasta.

Today, I would like to share with you a variety of rice porridge that I used to prepare for my son when he was about one.

Since I was not a rice porridge person, I did not have much idea on what were the appropriate ingredients to add in and I have to admit that I basically only made pumpkin rice porridge or plain rice porridge with steamed fish for my son, Jun Shan (JS) for the first two weeks or so.

After consulting an SAHM friend, Dorcas Chee, she suggested that I add in a variety of ingredients to the porridge. "I add in almost anything I can think of!" she told me and that sentence really hit me and I thought: "What kind of lousy food have I been serving my son?"

And so, the experiments begin. I jot down the vegetables, fruits and meats that are suitable for my son and came up with a list. 

Some of the ingredients I often used in rice porridge

Here are my top ten combinations. 

I usually substitute water with chicken, beef or pork rib broth. I would first prepare the broth and keep the meat as I will serve the porridge with the shredded meat. 

  1. Broccoli, potato, carrot, leek, tomato, onion, ginger
  2. Beetroot, carrot, onion, lettuce
  3. Chinese spinach (purple or green), wolfberries, onion
  4. Lotus root, carrot, onion, ginger
  5. Zuchinni/cucumber, pumpkin, leek/any leafy vegetable
  6. Pumpkin, carrot, tomato, onion
  7. Wild yam (huai shan), carrot, onion, ginger
  8. Cabbage, carrot, tomato, onion, ginger
  9. Tofu, carrot, tomato, onion
  10. Red dates (seeds removed), wolfberries, dried oyster/dried scallop. (This is usually served with steamed fish and I use water instead of meat broth to cook the porridge)
NOTE: I use sea salt as it is healthier

Here, I would like to thank Dorcas for sharing her cooking ideas with me. It certainly made the porridge tastes better and contains more nutrients. 

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