This multi-course meal from Chaozhou was orig­i­nally meant to be a re­li­able, daily form of sus­te­nance. At the heart of this mod­est ‘ban­quet’ is a va­ri­ety of small dishes – whether fer­mented, pick­led, cured or aged – that add in­ter­est and flavour to a hum­ble bowl of por­ridge.

Pair with: Small Mon­ster Ses­sion In­dia Pale Ale, brewed to be slightly dry and bit­ter and per­fect as a palate cleanser for this light course.

Serves 1

Prep time 1 hour + 2-3 days cur­ing Cook time 30 min­utes


1 cup gluti­nous rice

1 cup Thai jas­mine rice

1 cup Ja­panese short-grain rice 150ml fresh co­conut juice 1 gin­ger flower

» Soak all rice grains in wa­ter in sep­a­rate bowls, mak­ing sure that the grains are fully sub­merged.

» Strain gluti­nous and Thai jas­mine rice and save for other use. Com­bine wa­ter from soak­ing gluti­nous and Thai jas­mine rice.

» Cook Ja­panese short-grain rice in a rice cooker.

» Add co­conut juice and gin­ger flower to the wa­ter mix­ture, then bring it to a gen­tle boil.

» Com­bine cooked Ja­panese short-grain rice with wa­ter mix­ture be­fore serv­ing.

salted egg

80g rock salt

10g chrysan­the­mum flow­ers 1 egg yolk

» Fill a tray with rock salt, then add chrysan­the­mum flow­ers and mix evenly. » Place egg yolk gen­tly in the salt tray, then cover them evenly with salt and chrysan­the­mum flow­ers.

» Store the tray cov­ered in a fridge and al­low the yolks to cure for 2-3 days. » Dust off salt be­fore serv­ing.

oil-poached black bean dace/ikan kun­ing

1 dace or 2 ikan kun­ing

1 cup veg­etable oil

1 tbsp fer­mented black beans

» Re­move in­nards from the fish, then salt it lightly.

» Heat veg­etable oil to 220°C and flash-fry fish un­til the fins and bones are crispy. » Fill a small pot with oil and add fer­mented black beans. Place fish in the mix­ture and heat gen­tly un­til the fish is soft.

pick­led cu­cum­ber

1 kyuri cu­cum­ber

1 tbsp light soya sauce

1 tbsp se­same oil chilli padi, as de­sired

1 tbsp chilli oil

100ml black rice vine­gar or beer vine­gar

» Place kyuri cu­cum­ber on the ta­ble and press down hard with your palm un­til it breaks. This cre­ates fis­sures in the cu­cum­ber that al­low the sauces to stick to the flesh.

» Slice kyuri cu­cum­ber into thick wedges.

» Mix light soya sauce with se­same oil, chilli padi, chilli oil and black rice vine­gar.

» Add kyuri wedges into the mix­ture and al­low to sit in the fridge for at least 30 min­utes.

» Serve cold.

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