Thursday, November 6, 2014

Lugaw, improved

A Filipino friend of mine brought a potful of stew to a party once. It was a delicious mixture of rice and chicken, cooked in chicken broth and seasoned with ginger, fish sauce and soy sauce. "What is it?" I asked after my second bowl. "Lugaw," he said.

Ever since then, I've been trying to recreate that stew. The first time, it was too bland--too much rice, not enough seasoning. The next few times, it was so salty that no one could eat it. Apparently, combining fish sauce, soy sauce and canned chicken broth is a really bad idea.

UPDATE: I made this recipe again, added a few things (people use garlic in their lugaw?) and left others alone (the chicken is still there!).I think I cobbled together a pretty darn good recipe--it's better, and a lot faster, than my previous version. Enjoy!
Lugaw/Arroz Caldo

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 2-3lb. chicken, cut into serving pieces
1/2 a small onion
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and julienned (or use two teaspoons of ginger powder)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3 tablespoons fish sauce
6 cups chicken broth
1 cup uncooked white rice, rinsed and drained

Heat the oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the chicken pieces to the pot, along with a cup of water, and then cover the pot. Allow the chicken to cook (covered) over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, for 5-10 minutes, until about a cup of liquid is left in the bottom of the pot.

Remove the chicken and set aside. Add the onion and minced garlic. Saute them until the onion is translucent and the garlic is lightly browned.

Add the julienned ginger, soy sauce, and fish sauce to the pot and stir. Continue cooking for 2 more minutes until the ginger becomes fragrant. If you're using powder, save it for the next step.

Add the chicken  and the broth to the pot (and the ginger powder, if you're using)and water, if needed, to completely submerge all of the chicken pieces. Add all of the rice to the liquid in the pot and cook over medium heat until the rice is soft and the porridge reaches the desired consistency--this can take 20-40 minutes depending on how thick you want the porridge. If the porridge becomes too thick, you can add water to thin out.

For Lugaw, serve the porridge in bowls as is.

For Arroz Caldo, remove the chicken meat from the bones and add the meat back to the porridge. Arroz Caldo can be topped with sliced hard boiled eggs, fried garlic, sliced scallions, additional fish sauce, ground black pepper, fresh kalamansi, anything you feel like.

No comments:

Post a Comment