This is a basic brown rice congee recipe, the easiest approach to make it from scratch.
It's is based on the Goan, Indian variation.
📕 What is this Congee recipe?
Rice congee is one of the simplest dishes in the world. At its base, it's just rice water and salt.
The word “congee” derives from the Tamil word “kaanchi” which means porridge or boiled rice. It's also known as rice water.
This dish has been around for thousands of years and has been enjoyed in many different cultures, including China, India, and Vietnam.
So, the given name might be different in those locations. Besides rice wasn't always the preferred main ingredient back then.
This simple recipe is based on the Goan Indian congee, which is called kanji or even pez.
The more popular and better-known Chinese congee is prepared differently. The rice is cooked down and broken up into a mash.
It also includes other ingredients such as soy sauce, ginger, and a boiled egg. It can include chicken and chicken broth as well or also fish,
You will need the following ingredients:
- Brown rice variety
- Salt (optional)
Brown rice is a million times healthier than white polished rice. White rice is polished rice, missing the bran and cereal germ.
This is so that white rice can be preserved for a longer period of time. So, the grain loses a portion of its nutritional value.
Bran is rich in dietary fibers (helps your digestion and bowel movement). It also contains essential fatty acids and a good amount of starch, protein, minerals, and vitamins.
I recommend using brown rice to make this congee. BUT if you can't get brown rice, you can substitute it with white rice. You can choose any variety!
I used a brown rice variety called Goan red rice (or ukade). People there grow this rice variety in their fields. This is what they use locally to make their "kanji/kanjee/pez" rice porridge.
🔪 How to make it?
Here is an overview of how to make this from scratch with ease.
The full recipe is located further below in the recipe card.
Place rice in a cooking pot and wash it 2-3 times with water or until the water looks clear.
Cover the rice with water and leave to soak for 2 hours.
That way the rice will be easier to digest.
Season with salt (optional) and cook until the rice is soft.
This rice porridge is served as a savory dish as is, without any other ingredients added.
Yet, you can choose to add something else such as rotisserie chicken or a boiled egg or a topping such as chopped green onions.
I love it with something sour, such as a green mango water pickle or a spiced shrimp pickle (called mol or molho). Just drop some of each into your congee and enjoy it that way.
You can have it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
It also goes well with red lentil curries and vegetable stir-fries.
💡 Pros of Eating Congee
Congee rice is super nutritious, and if prepared with whole rice, high in fibers.
The digestive tract can easily digest congee, making it a great food for those suffering from digestive problems. I make it when I got the flu, cold, or an upset stomach.
It's really easy, plainly flavored, and perfect if you are feeling sick or need something to pep you up.
People make it during the fasting period or when they want to lose weight.
The rice porridge is also a basic baby food option. Reduce or skip the salt to make it baby-friendly.
It's a very inexpensive food, pretty much anybody can afford it. Making it a perfect budget-friendly dish.
You can also easily meal prep your congee. It gets better every time you warm it up.
This recipe is also plant-based vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, and suited for a diabetic and low sodium diet.
Keep cooked congee rice in an airtight container and store it in your fridge for up to 3-4 days.
I recommend in fact reheating it because it gains on flavors when you do that.
Please feel free to share your thoughts and ideas with us in the comment section further below!
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Basic Brown Rice Congee
- 1 cup Brown Rice any variety, I use Goan brown rice in the pictures
- Water to rinse
- 3 cups Water to soak and boil
- Salt optional to season
- Place rice into a pot and cover with water. Mix with your clean hand and rinse the rice 2-3 times with fresh water until the water comes back kind of clear.1 cup Brown Rice, Water
- Pour water over the rice and close the pot with a lid. Leave to soak for 2-3 hours or overnight. This will shorten the boiling process and the rice will be easier to digest.3 cups Water
- Take the rice with water to the heat and keep it over a medium to slow heat setting. Season with salt (optional).Salt
- Boil rice until soft or until you are satisfied with the consistency and or water quantity. You can simmer it further to reduce the water. Yet, this dish is meant to be more on the watery side. This can take 20-40minutes.
- Serve up.
- Medium Pot with Lid