Chiu Chow-style congee
From Chaozhou in Guangdong Province, Chiu Chow people have brought their distinct dialect and cuisine to Hong Kong. The difference can be seen in their fresh-seafood renditions of congee, such as the baby oyster congee.
Chiu Chow congee is made tender and fragrant by covering it and letting it stand for about half an hour after it is cooked. According to folklore, this method was discovered accidently by a Chiu Chow fishing family, who usually kept a pot of congee on their boat when at sea. The family in question was robbed by pirates but the fisherman’s wife had the presence of mind to hide their freshly-made pot of congee under some blankets so that they would have food to sustain them for the voyage home. The pirates missed the congee and, when they had left, the family discovered the pleasant effect that covering the pot had on the rice grains.
Jacky Yu, chef, restaurateur, author and food critic recommends the Baby Oyster Congee at Chan Kan Kee Restaurant: