VEGETABLE CONGEE (GF, VEGAN)
- 1 cup brown short grain rice
- 4 cups vegetable broth (water also works)
- 1 small knob ginger
- 1/2 cup dried sliced shiitake mushrooms (see notes)
- 1/2 cup dried mixed mushrooms (I used a mixture of porcini, charcoal bumer, honey fungus, black trumpet and chanterelle) (see notes)
- 1 small sweet potato
- 1 small bunch collard greens (or other dark leafy greens such as kale, chard or cabbage) (about 2 cups when cut)
- kimchi (use a vegan kimchi for vegan option)
- soy sauce or tamari (use tamari for GF)
- hot chili oil
- green onions / scallions
- Rinse the rice well and drain. In a large pot, add the rice, vegetable stock or water, and ginger. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally.
- In the meantime, as the rice is cooking, in a large bowl, soak the dried mushrooms in 4 cups of warm water. Set aside. Peel and cut the sweet potato into 1-inch cubes. Set aside. Wash and cut the collard greens into 1-inch strips, removing any tough stalks. Set aside.
- When the congee has been cooking for 45 minutes, and the mushrooms are fully rehydrated, add the mushrooms into the congee. Slowly pour in the soaking liquid, discarding the last bits of liquid where any dirt and grit may have accumulated. Stir in the sweet potatoes. Cover and continue simmering, stirring occasionally, for another 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes have passed, stir in the collard greens. Continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, for another 15 minutes. At this point, the rice grains should have fully softened and absorbed most of the water. If the congee is too watery, simmer without covering the pot to allow some steam to escape for the last 15 minutes. If the congee is too thick, you can add additional water as needed.
- Serve warm with desired toppings. I love this Vegetable Congee with topped with kimchi, green onions, a splash of soy sauce and a bit of hot chili oil.
- PREPARE THE NIGHT BEFORE. You can make this congee the night before, cover and store in the refrigerator. I'll often start cooking a pot of this when I start preparing dinner. That way the congee can cook, cool and be put in the refrigerator before bed. Alternatively, enjoy some congee for dinner, and have the leftovers in the morning. Simply heat up the congee in the morning before serving.
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