Congees/Porridges of Other Asian Cuisines?

I bought an Armenian cookbook out of curiosity. One of these days I’ll learn to make kufta so I can have them more than once a year.

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you know… i’ve never made Kufta myself! … just italian meatballs
got a pic of that page by chance??

The Crispy Pork and Chinese Broccoli at Yai’s is the best in Thai Town imo. Definitely try the Ong Choy version.

Some of there other stuff is solid too. If the “Special” wall has Gaeng Som/Sour Curry I would give it a try (Spicy BBQ does a killer Gaeng Som with Cha Om Omelette). Sour curry is such a loved dish by Thai’s but it’s hardly on any menus.

Also of note Yai’s does a Khon Kaen style Pad Thai (Isaan style Pad Thai). It’s listed as “KK Pad Thai” I think on the specials board. Nobody to my knowledge in Thai Town is doing it this way.

I need to try their Black Egg Basil dish!

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Thanks for the heads-up!

You’re correct.

Interesting. My parents (who speak Mandarin natively) have always called is “Shi Fan.” I’ve never heard the term “zhou” for porridge, but that doesn’t mean anything b/c my knowledge of Mandarin is very poor.


Thanks, great suggestions. I do intend to cover differences in styles, but this is going to be a broadly general overview aimed at a more general audience, rather than the FTC crowd. I love your idea for a more detailed look at congee/porridge though.


Thanks for the recommendations, and apologies for the delay in replying. D’oh!..I have no idea why I forgot Siam Sunset. The OG Thai breakfast king! And, although I’ve been in Ruen Pair multiple times, I never managed to notice chok on their menu. I was too busy checking out other items.

Phnom Penh Noodle Shack was one I had already short-listed :+1:

Jook or zhou is what cantonese people call congee in cantonese. Nowadays, a lot of mandarin speakers use the literal translation from cantonese to refer to the dish (which kind of sounds like zhou in mandarin) but when I was younger a lot of mandarin speakers that I knew would refer to it as “shi fan” I’m not sure if that was a taiwanese thing (taiwanese mandarin speakers were the only people I had contact with growing up) or if all mandarin speakers did that.

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My understanding is that jook/zhou is traditional “peasant” food which included “broken rice” (damaged rice grains from the rice container, usually not incorporated into steamed rice). This is in contrast to “shi fan” (literally: mushy rice), which is made from intact, higher-quality grains of rice, but just cooked with a lot of more water than steamed rice.


I’ve heard the term Shi Fan used before in Shangahinese restaurants (in Hong Kong) back in the day by elders or Mainland expats who’ve settled in HK for a very long time. Rarely hear that these days, but I seem to recall people who’ve used that to strangely refer to the glutinous rice savory (or sweet) rolls (fan tuan), unless the term was Xi Fan or Chi Fan, I could be getting my intonations mixed up. Maybe someone who is Shanghainese on this board can clarify this for me?

Shi Fan also has the connotation of dilution and perhaps a bit watery in terms of texture. Maybe a bit closer to the Taiwanese style where the starch water is very thick, and the grains are very soft to the point of mushy or broken as already described but not quite there (unlike Chiu Chou congee where you still get a little bit of texture despite the softness). Then there’s Tang Pao Fan, which is just taking any kind of broth and pouring it over rice (like ochazuke but completely different animal).


One more question here. While the SGV Vietnamese restaurant scene obviously pales compared to Little Saigon, are there any recommendations for chao in the SGV?

nice recap of the porridge scene.

sorry, don’t know of a viet porridge specialist in sgv, but also in the OC, two location of Tam Bien that make the best chao long, offal congee with great lemongrass and blood sausages.


only because no one seems to have mentioned it, do not neglect filipino arroz caldo.


I had buttered grits and fried chicken this morning at Pann’s. I added fish sauce to the grits and it was pretty darn good.


Wait you have fish sauce bottles on you at all times?

I posted about it in the Best of SFV thread here. My favorite of all the porridges I’ve had.


yes. but not here. i do not read every thread here, and i would never assume that the vast majority of FTC’ers do either.

more significantly, i do not expect most people to remember a single post about a single dish.

No, I find out where we are going and pack accordingly. :slight_smile:

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