It's not every day that I feel like eating rice porridge, otherwise known as congee or 'juk' as I grew up calling it.
It's traditionally eaten as breakfast in the north of Thailand, a regular staple on any dim sum menu, and a sort of chinese comfort food. A truly versatile dish: there are many different regional variations, it can be eaten at any time of the day or night, or as substitute for plain rice.
To put it simply, rice porridge or congee is rice that has been boiled down in water until the grains have broken down and have significantly softened. Depending on the region, the consistency ranges from watery to almost gloopy.
Personally I prefer mine leaning towards gloopy, but my late grandfather (who came from the Teochow region of China) used to like his watery.
House of Rice Roll & Porridge was on my path home today, so I decided to make a quick pit stop for a mid-morning/early lunch.
The place was clean and tidy which always makes for a good first impression. Auntie greeted me with a smile and handed me a laminated menu as I walked in.
Written in both chinese and english, the menu is clear and easy to read. There's an array of different items: sweet as well as savoury cheong fun; an assortment of congee including some interesting additional items such as intestine and pig liver; glutinous rice balls; specials; fried rice; snacks and desserts.
I ordered my favourite cheong fun of all time, char siew cheong fun (bbq pork), a fish congee, and a homemade lime juice to wash it all down with.
I didn't have long to wait, the char siew cheong fun arrived first, closely followed by the generous portion of fish congee. Good job I have a big appetite.
I love the way they cut the cheong fun into bite size morsels. In Hong Kong, they come in a stack of three long rolls. This rice roll was soft. With a melt-in-your mouth texture, the barbeque pork had been trimmed of any fat, and the sauce was neither too salty nor too sweet. Although different from the Cantonese style that I am used to, it was delicious all the same.
The fish rice porridge had a sprinkling of green onions and crisp doughy cracker type things on top (sorry don't know the proper term for these?!).
The fish was soft which was good, the consistency of the congee was thick and just how I like it. I love my congee plain because then I can simply add condiments to make it spicy and salty. Seeing how I am an chilli fiend, I spooned in lashings of chilli. Oh, this was so good and so very filling. Washed down with refreshing cold lime juice. Yummy!!
As I made my way out, I thought I'd take a snap of the framed press clipping from The Sunday Times regarding their durian cheong fun. I'm not the biggest fan of durian. Not just because of the smell, but also because of the texture, which for me is a little too slimey.
However, Lazy Foodies did try it and now recommend it. Perhaps I need to give this pungent smelling fruit another chance ... thus, it gives me an urgent excuse to come back to sample their prawn cheong fun.
A great little place serving good, simple, honest, value-for-money and to some, 'different' food.
House of Rice Roll & Porridge
89 Killiney Road, Singapore 239534
Tel: +65 6238 9028