Friday 18 November 2011


The healing and comforting properties of chicken soup is legendary and is known and accepted worldwide. Each country has their own kind of chicken soup. It is one dish that is best when home made. The love and care that went into making it is what makes it taste so delicious.

The Kulinarya Cooking Club's theme for this month is Arroz Caldo, which is the Philippine chicken soup. The word arroz means rice and caldo means broth so the two put together means a dish of rice in broth. It is basically a well flavoured rice porridge. The name may be translated very simply but it is actually a very wholesome and tasty dish with chicken, garlic, onions and ginger. 

Arroz caldo is the best thing to have when you have cough or colds or just feeling under the weather. The healing properties of chicken plus the antioxidant properties of garlic, onion, ginger and pepper makes arroz caldo the best tasting medicine you can ever have.

I have cooked my arroz caldo in a slightly different manner (although it is still essentially the same) because my children do not like "bits" in the porridge. After sautéing the garlic, onions and ginger, I cooked the whole chicken (in the style of chicken rice) in the stock first before straining and using the stock to cook the rice. The chicken is more tender and succulent when cooked this way. It is then used to top the porridge along with toasted garlic, spring onions, ginger shreds and egg. Just looking at it makes me feel good already.


1 whole chicken
a few slices of ginger
1 spring onion, cut into 3 pieces
2 tbsps. butter plus 1 tbsp. of oil
2 tbsps. crushed garlic
2" x 2" piece of ginger, shredded
2 onions, sliced
about 3 litres of home made chicken stock
1 c. of uncooked Jasmine, Milagrosa or long grain rice
1/2 c. uncooked glutinous rice
spring onions, cut into rounds
ground black pepper
extra shredded ginger for topping
sesame oil
fish sauce and lime wedges or calamansi halves to serve


Stuff the chicken with the slices of ginger and the spring onion. Set aside.

Sauté the garlic in the butter and oil on low heat until just golden. Remove half and set aside for topping. 

Add the ginger and onions and half a teaspoon of salt. Cook until the onions are softened and translucent.

Add the stock and the whole chicken (Use a rich home made chicken stock made by simmering chicken bones with onions and ginger for a few hours. This would really make a difference in the taste of your arroz caldo). Bring to a boil and simmer gently for 30 minutes. 

Turn the heat off after 30 minutes but leave the chicken in the pot, covered, for another 30 minutes. Take the chicken out of the stock and transfer to a dish. 

Brush with sesame oil and cover to keep it from drying out. 

Slice the chicken meat before using as topping for the porridge.

Strain the stock. 

Wash the  two kinds of rice and put in a big pot with the strained stock. Bring to a boil and simmer gently for about 50 minutes. This has to be stirred every once in a while. The rice tends to settle and will stick to the pot if not stirred. The cooked porridge should be viscous, not watery nor claggy. The rice grains should break out but not melt altogether. 

Ladle the rice porridge into bowls, top with slices of chicken and sprinkle with spring onions, toasted garlic, shredded ginger and a raw egg. 

Get well soon.

Thank you to this month's hosts, Joy for choosing this month's theme. Visit the other member's blogs to see their arroz caldo recipes.

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  1. Wow sarap! lovely presentation..
    nakakagutom naman yan :) great pics too!

  2. This is amazing in so many ways. It's comforting, beautiful and elegant at the same time. Really, bravo!

  3. I love how you very neatly placed each ingredients together. Looks very comforting to eat. Thank you, Adora!

    ~ ray ~

  4. This is a beautiful food, yet it's comfort food as well. I like how you use raw egg in there. We eat raw egg too in Japan, but I think Americans get scared when I say so. =P Is raw egg okay to eat in UK? Here it's big no no...

  5. This dish is incredibly beautiful and looks divine. I cannot wait to try this.

  6. What a delicious looking dish, Adora. So very comforting seeming.

  7. I was lucky to have Korean and Vietnamese flatmates when I was in a result, every time I'd be sick with the flu or a cold, they would combine their cooking skills and come up with a Vietnamese rice and chicken porridge topped with bibimbap-like toppings, complete with a golden egg yolk on top. Love your photographs!

  8. I would love to be comforted but your arroz Caldo

  9. I love the idea of the whole chicken being cooked in the stock! I'm sure it made your arroz caldo even more flavorful.

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  11. Wow! Such an amazing presentation. Makes me want to grab the bowl from the screen and just devour it.

  12. it is unbelievable that an ordinary comfort food can be so gorgeous :-)

  13. Nami, there are worries about eating raw egg here in the UK, too, so I do refrain from eating them. However I just love them cracked on top of hot noodle soup or porridge where it poaches. Just delicious!

  14. That's beautiful and I have to try it topped with raw egg.

  15. B likes her hot congee with raw egg as well...lovely arroz caldo you got here!

  16. loved the lugaw, loved the toppings, loved the bowl, loved the photo, loved the chicken on the side! what more can i say, i've been a fan and have been following your blog for quite a while now! :)

  17. Sounds interesting and very much like comfort food, I will definitely give this recipe a go, thanks for sharing :))

  18. I remember topping my steaming plateful of rice with raw egg. I don't have any problems with that. This bowl looks comforting and yes part healing... perfect for this kind of weather here in STL ... Yes im back in the cold, i would have pocketed some sunshine from FL no? haha.

  19. Wow, I love the way you presented the chicken...reminds me of Singaporean chicken rice. Your arroz caldo looks perfect! Beautiful pictures!

  20. Love the idea of doing the chicken whole and using it as sliced topping and also the raw egg....I can imagine the creamines it will add to the hot Arroz Caldo when you stir it in....can I be sick in your house? hehehehehe!

  21. That is great you used the whole chicken.

  22. Thanks for the recipe, but I'm surprised no one has commented that arroz caldo is directly translated to 'hot rice' not Rice and broth. I thought you should know.

    1. It has been mistakenly written that arroz caldo means hot rice; as mentioned in the article, arroz means rice and caldo means broth or soup. Arroz caldo is a dish of rice cooked in chicken broth.


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