Monday, December 21, 2009

Chinese Sausage Claypot Rice - 煲仔飯

The weather is getting colder as we enter the winter season.  It's usually the time to eat claypot food to keep us warm. On the day that we went to San Francisco, we stopped over at Chinatown to buy a Chinese claypot and a Chinese chopping knife. The place we bought them from is called Wok Shop on Grand street. I bought this mid-sized claypot:The owner told us to do the following steps before the initial use to help protect the claypot so that it won't crack so easily:
1. Soak the clay pot in cold water for at least one hour.
2. Put a coat of cooking oil  (just a little) outside the claypot.
3. Add some cold water and let it boil on top of the stove for approximate 15 minutes so that the oil can seal the claypot.

I immediately started using the claypot that evening.  I had never made rice from claypot before, and I was afraid the rice would either burn or get soggy. So, I used some common sense and cooked the food and rice in the claypot. As a result, I was successful in making a delicious Chinese sausage rice meal from the claypot. Here are the steps before I forget them:

2 cups of long grain rice
2 slices of ginger
2 pairs of Chinese sausage (uncut)
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. cooking oil
4 tbsp Dark soy sauce
1 oz. meat  (optional)

Cooking Steps:
  1. 2 cups of rice, wash and pour into electric rice cooker first.
  2. Pour enough cold water into the rice cooker until the reaching the water level for 2 cups. If you do not have an electric rice cooker, pour 1 and 3/4cupscold water into the washed rice.
  3. Pour all the rice and water from the rice cooker into the claypot, that's the method to ensure we have the correct measurement of water for 2 cups.
  4. Cover the claypot cook with high until boil, add in gingers,  Chinese sausages or any meat that you like to add.
  5. Cover again and turn the heat to low and simmer for 25 minutes.
  6. In another saucer pan, heat a tablespoon of oil in low heat,add 4 tablespoons of dark soysauce and a teaspoon of sugar and mix well, then pour into a small saucer bowl。
  7. When the rice are cooked, pour the sauce from the saucer bowl into the claypot and mix well then it's ready to be served hot.
    Tip:(1):If you add meat, it should be marinated first with half teaspoon of each of soy sauce, sugar,sesame oil, and cornstarch. It's best not to add too much meat, for the meat juice will make the rice too soggy. The more meat you put in, the more time you need to cook the rice.

    Tip:(2)  To get perfectly cooked rice, only use long grain rice and never open the lid when you are cooking the food.  Don't add too much water, for the rice should come out moist, but not soggy.

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