05/15/18 10:32am

The more austere lugaw (left) and golden yellow arroz caldo at HOI with crispy tofu.

My mother is from the Philippines, which is why my family called rice porridge lugaw when I was growing up. Even my father now calls rice porridge lugaw even though he grew up in Taiwan calling it mai. The lugaw we made at home was usually a bland rice-and-water-only affair, without even salt. Occasionally, my mother would make chicken lugaw by braising drumsticks in the simmering rice, a rudimentary version of the chicken porridge known as arroz caldo.

On the all-day breakfast menu at the House of Inasal in Woodside, you’ll find both lugaw and arroz caldo. (If you order before noon, they come with free taho, Philippine-style dòuhuā, extra soft tofu topped with sago pearls and arnibal, a syrup made from brown sugar, ideally muscovado.) (more…)

10/31/16 10:48am
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Sea buckthorn berries provide a pleasant acidity to this cold Danish porridge.

Porridge is having a moment in the culinary consciousness. Brave new savory versions—cumin scented millet for one—abound, according Jill Neimark’s wonderful NPR piece. It’s also been having a moment for me personally as I’ve turned to congee for comfort and sustenance.

Tired of congee and oatmeal I decided to give the Grain Bar at Klaus Meyer’s Great Northern Food Hall a try last week. After a rather hellish commute I was more than ready for a comforting bowl of mush. I bellied up to the grain bar and perused the six-item menu, which was heavy on the oatmeal and also featured barley.  I almost skipped the grains in favor of and egg sandwich, but then I saw the øllebrød ($7). Unlike everything else on the menu it was a cold porridge made with rye bread and sea buckthorn among other things. (more…)

06/16/14 12:35pm
BONJUKEXT

Bonjuk serves one thing and one thing only, Korean rice porridge.

The real K-town in New York City is in Queens, stretching for about five miles from Northern Boulevard and Union Street in Flushing all the way out to Manhasset. This vast K-tropolis is lined with dozens of BBQ restaurants, kimbap joints, large Korean supermarkets, fried chicken spots, a store that sells Korean stone beds, and even a Korean-run Third Wave espresso bar. There are so many places it would take an entire lifetime to document them all. Today C+M’s K-tropolis takes a look at Bonjuk, a Korean porridge specialist. (more…)

03/11/13 9:53am
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Fried chicken it’s what’s for breakfast in Indonesia and Elmhurst.

The very word porridge invokes austerity and blandness. It’s something one eats when sick or in a British orphanage. So it went for me with Asian rice porridge, variously called congee or jook. That is until I tried an Indonesian version called bubur ayam ($5.50) at Java Village. It literally means chicken porridge. More specifically fried chicken porridge. That’s right, fried chicken porridge. It’s topped with crunchy fried bits of bird, crisp pieces of cruller, and, if you like, fiery sambal. I always opt for a salty preserved egg and a squirt or two of the thick, sweet soy sauce kecap manis.  Sweet, savory, spicy, and anything but austere, it is one of my favorite breakfasts in all of Queens.

Java Village, 86-10 Justice Ave., Elmhurst, 718-205-2166