It's rice. It's savoury. And it's delicious.
It is Bubur Ayam (Rice Porridge with Chicken Broth). It's a very common hearty breakfast in Indonesia which can be rather cheap for an awesome portion of it.
We have it for our dinner. It is simple, although it requires a lot of morsels to come with it.
Here's what I do.
300g white rice
1.5-2 litre homemade chicken stock
2 bay leaves
2 kaffir lime leaves, torn
a pinch of salt
Cook rice with water, just to cover, until comes to boil. Add in the spices ingredients. Pour in chicken stock 500 ml at a time, stir well. Simmer while keep stirring to avoid the catch on the bottom of the pot. When you see that the rice has become soft like you used to cook rice pudding, then remove from the stove.
1 free-range whole chicken, weighed about 1.5kg, washed and jointed
5 kaffir lime leaves, torn
2 lemongrass, bruised
1 cm galangal, bruised
1 litre water
Make Paste: 8 shallots, chopped; 8 cloves small garlic, chopped; 2cm fresh turmeric, charred; 1 tsp coriander seeds, toasted; 1/2 tsp cumin, toasted; 5 candlenuts, toasted; blend in a blender or grind on mortal and pestle.
2 Tbs oil
1/2 tsp ground white peppercorn
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
a pinch of salt and raw sugar
Put the chicken portions in the water, together with kaffir lime leaves, galangal, and lemongrass until boiled, then simmer to a low heat. Meanwhile, heat the frying pan and add in oil. Cook the paste, ground white peppercorn and ground nutmeg until fragrant. Put this sauteed paste into the chicken broth. Stir and cook until the chicken is tender. Season with salt and raw sugar to balance the flavour. Remove the chicken and drained.
Once the chicken drained, fry them on a shallow oil just until it gets colour. Remove and drained on paper towel. Shred the meat to complete the morsels set.
Shredded chicken meat
Fried shallots (4 big shallots, thinly sliced. Fried in a shallow oil until beautifully browned but not too dark. You'll get that nice soft golden brown colour. Spread this on top of paper towel on a baking tray. Do not pile, or you'll get soggy and oily fried shallots. Leave them dry. Your fried shallots will be crispy)
Celery leaves, chopped
Fried soy beans (soak soy beans in a tap water normally when you are going to make tempeh, drained, and fried)
Fried Melinjo crackers, or other fish or tapioca crackers might go well too
Cakwe (A Chinese finger bread, fried--I made this myself but not too successful, so I won't run down the list)
Sambal, a homemade or you can cheat by buying a bottle of Indonesian sambal at your Asian grocery store
Spoon the rice porridge in a bowl. Add shredded chicken on top, sprinkle with chopped celery leaves, fried shallots, fried soy beans, served with Cakwe, fried Melinjo crakers, and sambal as the sides. Enjoy.