Doesn't taste like Mom's home cooking

Big Chinese brunch

It all started with my not yet having used my Zojirushi rice cooker’s congee/porridge function and having half a carton of vegetable broth to use up. Just rice+broth – what a boring mixture! – and I did not want to buy pork floss that I would not use again for a long time.

So it came to mind to create a da lang meal for a weekend “brunch”. Da lang, as I know it, is the concept of having plain congee supplemented with abundant savoury side dishes. And so the very next thing – of course – was to create a menu. Just to keep me honest and not give up halfway through.

Here is the menu text:

Da Lang Brunch Menu

Vegetarian Mushroom Congee

Chilli Bamboo Shoots
Miso Pickled Cucumbers
Soft Boiled Egg
Marinated Chicken Wings
Garlic Sauteed Spinach and Kale
Kaya Toast

The dishes were a combination of store-bought, pre-prepared and fresh prepared so it wasn’t overly difficult and my cousin, Meg, had dropped by and we could chat while finished off the side dishes.

Congee 1 cup white rice with about two cups of vegetable broth and water up to the line in the rice cooker. It was less watery than I would have wanted it and I know I could have added more water and reboiled. Out of curiosity, I wanted to know the consistency my rice cooker wanted to make congee at.

I did say it was a mushroom congee but that didn’t work out as planned so I just sauteed white mushrooms in a light soya sauce and hoisin sauce mixture.

Chili bamboo shoots store bought and a pantry staple for us.

Miso marinated cucumbers I hate cucumbers but the MIL gave me a few small ones and I was so glad to have a Miso-Pickled Cucumbers recipe to try. So, this side dishe was pre-prepared.

Soft boiled eggs except they are totally hard-boiled, oops.

Marinated chicken wings from a “recipe” I got from Cristine Ha’s cookbook in the vignette portion of the book. The wings aren’t pretty in the least but they are nicely lightly flavoured because they were boiled with fish sauce, ginger and black pepper.

Garlic sauteed spinach and kale Fresh bunch of spinach and frozen chopped kale tossed together

Kaya toast okay, this isn’t savoury but it was just something else to throw in and to try out the kaya I finally bought from T&T – just Nottingham bread slides which have a lovely slight sourdough taste with one buttered side and one side with kaya.