Rice Porridge

also known as lugaw in the Philippines, congee in China or okayu お粥 in Japan.

This dish is very common within Asian households and is customarily consumed when an individual is sick (with fever, vomiting, diarrhea, or food poisoning), and is ready to begin ingesting food. When recovering from illness, there are specific foods to consume in order to promote and hasten the recovery process. Some foods that are high in fat, oil or acid would delay the recovery process. The age-old tradition of rice porridge is passed down within families, like mine, because it is known to promote healing for being easy on the gastrointestinal tract.

Even if you are not sick, you can enjoy rice porridge as a breakfast dish, appetizer or carbohydrate pairing to your meal. In our household, we sometimes consume it with pickled plum (umeboshi 梅干), fish, egg, chicken, pork lechon kawali or pork floss (rousong 肉鬆) sprinkled on top. The image on the right is dried garlic, spring onion, boiled egg and pork lechon.

Additionally, if you are with sensitive skin conditions (like eczema, psoriasis or atopic dermatitis skin conditions), then you can easily enjoy this dish. It is also safe for vegans and vegetarians to consume.

Once prepared, please consume it within 24 hours because after that, the rice will go bad. The preparation of ingredients takes me under 5 minutes, and the cook time takes about 25 to 40 minutes. Be sure to have your ladle in hand and a pitcher of water in the other because this dish requires a lot of attention and waiting, but it is well-worth it!


  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 thumb of ginger
  • 1-3 stems of Japanese spring onion
  • half cup or full cup of rice
  • Salt


Prepare all the ingredients into their respective sizes so that they cook evenly.

  • The spring onions are sliced horizontally for sweetness.
  • The garlic is minced.
  • The ginger is sliced then smashed.


Begin by rinsing the rice three times.

After the rinsing process, evenly distribute the rice in a pot with water. The amount of water is measured by putting in your left hand and allowing it to reach the first line of your middle finger.

Once the pot of rice has been low-heat boiling for about 5 – 10 minutes, you may now add the garlic, ginger and spring onion. If you like a strong spring onion taste then do not add it in this stage, save it for the end with the salt.

Allow the ingredients to all boil over low-heat. This is to avoid the rice from getting burnt at the bottom and sticking to the pot.

During the process, it is important to stir the rice. When boiling normal rice, you do not do this but for rice porridge, you must stir the rice.

Additionally, since this is rice porridge, you will have to add water every now and again because you do not want the rice to soak all the water. The end product should be a soupy like porridge texture.

Before completing the cooking process, be sure to add salt to taste. It brings out the flavour of the ingredients. The consistency of the rice by the end of the cooking process would look something like the images here.

Let me know how you found this recipe in the comments below!