For the cooks: Quinoa mushroom congee | The Gourmand & Gourmet

For the cooks: Quinoa mushroom congee

It’s heading into winter, which means big bowls of steaming porridge are on their way. But what to do when you’re not feeling that sweet morning goodness and not even a generous drizzle of honey can tempt you into getting out the pots and pans? Make it savoury of course! Nims from The Jam Pantry is no stranger to turning breakfast on its head, and you’ll find plenty of quirky dishes on her café menu of a morning. So we expected nothing less than serious creativity when it came to serving up a porridge recipe from her fabulous repertoire. Best of all, after a good soak overnight, the quinoa in this bowl is full of all sorts of goodness, with enzymes and beneficial bacteria that will do plenty for your gut health. You don’t HAVE to soak, but do you really want to deprive all those little critters of a good party out of and inside your belly?

Quinoa Congee

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 5 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 sheet of nori, torn into pieces
  • Salt
  • Avocado
  • Soy sauce or tamari
  • Toasted sesame seeds, to sprinkle
  1. Begin the night before. Soak the quinoa in 2 cups of water overnight, along with the shiitake mushrooms and nori wrapped in a piece of muslin or other clean, loose woven fabric.
  2. The next morning, remove the nori and shiitake bouquet garni, drain the quinoa and transfer to a pot. Add 5 cups of water, 1/2 a teaspoon of salt and the garni.
  3. Bring the quinoa to the boil, cover with a lid and reduce the heat to a slow simmer for about an hour, stirring occasionally until the mix is rich and creamy. Your quinoa will be see through.
  4. Remove the garni, open the muslin, slice the shiitake and add them back to the pot (the seaweed will have done it’s job adding a whole range of B vitamins to your pot of yum).
  5. Serve in little bowls with avocado, a drizzle of soy sauce or tamari, and some toasted sesame seeds. You can also add a spoonful of grated carrot or spring onions, some pickled ginger and, for the extra hungry, a fried egg.
Feeling virtuous?