Suzy MacFarland


Gruel or congee has been used for centuries for nutrition and some for medicinal purposes.
There are hundreds, but this is a favorite.
Traditionally, in addition to vegetables, prescribed Chinese medicinal herbs were added.
Adding ginger to this recipe, for instance, would add a further warming effect but should be used sparingly for children.
Many kinds of grain can be used.
Millet, a widely grown grain is very popular.
Children, the elderly or those convalescing benefit a great deal with this food because it is easily digestible.
This type of gruel is made thin in these cases.


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10 Min
45 Min
Stove Top


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  • 1 c
  • 4 c
    broth or water
  • 1 large
    leek, sliced thinly using white and green parts



  1. Congee or gruel is made with all kinds of grains.
    This was one of my favorites made with rice.
    Normally 2 cups of water or broth is used for 1 cup of rice.
    For gruel, we add more liquid.
    The congee pictured here is a thin congee.

    First of all, wash the rice extremely well.

    Add the water to a medium size pan (3 to 4 quart size) or you may want to use your rice cooker.
    Bring the liquid to a boil and add the rice and sliced leek.
    There is no need to cover the pan.
    Allow the contents to come to a boil again and turn the heat down very low.
    Cook the mixture down until most of the water has evaporated. Add salt to taste.
    Stir occasionally.
    Depending on how thick you desire the congee, water can be added or it can be cooked down more to make it thicker.

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