Yam Rice and Watercress Soup. Comfort food that is simple, easy and extremely satisfying. For a change from our regular standard dinner, usually a vegetable dish, a meat or fish dish, soup and of course, plain white rice, I decided to cook Yam Rice instead. Yam Rice has always been a favourite. I love eating yam, delicious in both sweet and savory. Watercress Soup is nutritious and delicious. Usually when the weather is hot, the Chinese would boil this soup as it helps to reduce heatiness and detoxifies the body. This is one of my family's favourite soup.
Here's the recipe for the rice :
(serves 4 to 5)
2 cups basmathi rice
3 cups hot water
400gm yam, cubed (approx. 2 cups)
200gm lean pork meat
50gm dried prawns
2 clove garlic, chopped
1/4 tsp chinese five-spice powder
1/4 tsp white pepper powder
2 tsp chicken stock seasoning
1 tsp salt or more, to taste
3 to 4 tbsp cooking oil
crispy fried shallots for garnishing
chopped spring onions for garnishing
- Wash rice and soak in water for about 20 minutes. Drain.
- Wash dried prawns clean and soak in water for about 20 minutes. Drain and pound coarsely, or chop to small pieces. Retain water from soaked prawns.
- Clean yam and cut to small cubes. Keep aside.
- Slice pork meat to thin slices.
- Heat oil and saute chopped garlic until fragrant. Add in dried prawns and stir till dried prawns are crispy and fragrant. (It will start to crackle a little when crispy). Add in pork slices and stir for about 2 minutes. Stir in the yam, 5 spice powder, pepper and continue to fry for 2 minutes. (It should smell aromatic by now). Add in the drained rice and stir for about 2 minutes.
- Scoop the yam rice into a rice cooker. Place retained water from (2) above in a cup and add hot water to make a total of 3 cups. Pour into the rice cooker, add chicken stock seasoning and salt to taste (It should be slightly saltier than you would like it to be). The rice would have absorbed some of the saltiness when it is done.
- When rice is cooked and rice cooker switched to "Keep Warm", leave it for about 15 minutes for the rice to settle, then fluff it with a fork or spoon.
- Spoon onto a plate and garnish with crispy fried shallots and chopped spring onion. (Crispy fried shallots and the chopped spring onions really do make a difference in this rice dish, it will taste so much tastier and more fragrant, so I would advise you not to skip these garnishings!).
Here's the recipe for Watercress Soup :
600gm pork ribs
400gm watercress, cleaned and snap to large pieces
15-20 red dates
2 honey dates (optional)
40gm dried squid, washed and drain
salt to taste
3-1/2 litres water
- To get rid of the smell and scum from the pork ribs : Boil some water in a small pot. Put the pork ribs and let it simmer for about 2-3 minutes. Drain. Discard water.
- Boil 3-1/2 litres water in a stockpot. (I use a big claypot for soups). Add in pork ribs, red dates, dried squid and let it boil at medium heat for 30 minutes.
- Add in watercress and turn heat to low. Let it simmer for another 2 hours, stirring once or twice in between. If water evaporates, some hot water may be added. Add salt to taste.
- Serve hot.