Eskimo Nebula

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Monday, November 7, 2011

The power of Lugaw compels you!

Hello Everybody,

Depending on where you are situated it may be getting colder outside and you're starting to layer your clothes, but if you're not; then why haven't you invited me over to visit you yet???!!! ;p

I came home from work tonight not expecting to cook anything too complicated if anything at all, but I ended up making a very simple and common, but beloved Filipino dish called Lugaw (pronounced Lou-gow) or if you want to use the Spanish terminology it can also be referred to as Arroz Caldo. I guess you would call it a type of soup, but maybe also a type of porridge. It's based on a few ingredients: rice, ginger, vegetable stock or broth and a few seasonings. I made my own version as I do of almost everything I'ved cooked since the dawn of time; so of course this is a Vegetarian/Vegan version of Lugaw.

The traditional Lugaws do tend to have some meat in them; the most common one that comes to mind is chicken, but of course we're omitting that for my recipe. I actually didn't substitute anything for the chicken. I think that the few ingredients alone are hearty enough and definitely satisfy an appetite; especially on a cold winter's day.

Halle-luya! I <3 Ginger =)

If you love Ginger and hearty soups; then you will love this!

Here is what I used for the one I made earlier this evening:

Ingredients for Lugaw

4-5 Cups of cooked short grain brown rice
(It's better to use day old rice, but newly cook will do too)
6 cloves of garlic thinly sliced
1 Handful of medium thick slice pieces of ginger
3 Small onions sliced
Pinch of Turmeric or Saffron/Safflower
1 Bay Leaf
2-3 Tb Soy Sauce or Tamari
2 Tb Nipa Vinegar
3 Tsp Sesame Oil
6 Cups of filtered water or  low sodium Vegetable stock
Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper to taste


In a large heavy bottomed pot saute the garlic slices in 3-4 Tb of oil until just golden brown. Add the rice being sure move the rice and break it apart if necessary; so that it is evenly coated with the garlic and oil. Then season the rice by adding in your soy sauce and sesame oil, mixing it around to evenly distribute it. Let it cook for a few minutes or until thoroughly heated through. At this point you will be adding in the water/vegetable stock along with the 1 bay leaf. Once you've mixed everything together add in your sliced onions,vinegar, ginger along with a little freshly ground black pepper. Check your soup for seasoning, stir and let simmer for 18-25 minutes on medium heat. Never leave the pot or stove unattended, stir it occasionally to make sure that nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan. It will thicken dramatically and once you start to see that there are tunnels of steam shooting out of the surface you know that the Lugaw is close to being finished.

A big pot full of love!

Once the Lugaw is done, turn off the heat and let it sit for a few minutes. It's best to eat this while it's hot and the flavors will only get better and better the longer you keep the soup. 

A bowlful of love that hugs you from the inside =)

It's truly a Filipino Comfort food. I guess the U.S. equivalent to this would be like a bowl of Grandma's Chicken soup. It warms you up and makes you release a happy sigh of 'ahhhh.'

I wish I had more photos to share with you for this, but it's not a super complicated recipe anyway. I hope you'll give it a try.

Happy Cooking and Good Health to you all.


1 comment:

  1. I looooooove lugaw! Of course, you already know that, Jess. In addition to being known as arroz caldo, it's also known as Congee or Jook in different parts of Asia. I will be doing a lugaw feature soon as well - it is perfect for warming the body and soul on a cold winter's day.

    Thanks for sharing, Jess!