As the Canadian thanksgiving recently passed and with the US thanksgiving holiday approaching, I thought I’d share a great way to use the leftover ham bone. You can also substitute the ham bone for turkey bones as well.
Growing up, congee (aka rice porridge) was often made when a family member was sick or if we wanted to have a lighter lunch. This was the perfect meal for me to make after thanksgiving, since I wanted something warm and comforting, and a great way to utilize my leftovers. This recipe is simple and delicious.
Ingredients to make a full pot (serves 8):
1 large ham bone
½ a sweet potato diced-1/2 inch thick
2 cups of Jasmine rice
8 cups of water -have more handy to adjust the consistency
1 tbsp of fish sauce
2 cups of shredded turkey meat
Pinch of white pepper
Garnish with green onions, coriander or arugula
1. Clean the leftover ham bone by rinsing it under water in a colander to get rid of any sauce. Cut off any big pieces of fat. If there is tons of meat left on the bone, cut the meat and add to congee during the cooking process.
2. Using a large pot, add 2 cups of rice and wash it under the sink until all the starch is clear (4-5 times).
3. Dice the sweet potato.
4. Add the ham bone, rice, and sweet potato in the large pot, and add water. I filled mine up ¾ of a pot full, about 8 cups of water.
5. Wait until the liquid boils and then simmer on medium heat for 1 hour. If you like a watery consistency, and like to see each grain of rice clearly, than the congee is ready. Turn it down to low, season it with fish sauce.
6. If you like a thick consistency similar to porridge (my preference), then simmer for another hour (total 2 hours). Make sure to not burn your congee and check that there is enough water at all times. Keep stirring and adjust the heat as needed. When ready, turn the temperature to low, season, and garnish. Add a pinch of white pepper before serving.
Often times, you get congee that is made from just water and rice, which is pretty boring. Next time you have leftovers; think about what soup or congee you can make out of it, you will be impressed.
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