Lap Cheong (Chinese sausage) Rice

For those who've never had the opportunity of exposing your taste buds to lap cheong (Chinese sausage) I think you should do so if you ever get the chance. No...it isn't like the Sabrett hot dogs you find peppered on every street corner..although those are quite good when you're famished and in the middle of nowhere (like...Yankee stadium). Chinese sausages are a mixture of pork and pork fat, and what gives them their fragrance is a grain alcohol. They're dry-cured and you can find them hanging on colored strings at china towns dry good markets. My favorite is actually the duck liver lap cheong, which is ..I'm not quite sure how to explain it..it's a tad sweet, mildly salty, and bursting with a fragrant alcohol scent. My descriptions are probably not doing it justice..but really..it's good stuff.

At home we usually make lap cheong claypot rice, basically rice cooked over the stove top in a large claypot with the lap cheong placed on top to infuse the rice while steaming. Another addition to the lap cheong is salted duck which is similar to duck confit but not cooked submerged in fat...the baby bok choy is also steamed on top of the rice for the last five minutes of cooking. Anyway, as much as I love the sausages..I actually go directly to the bottom of the claypot scraping the burnt and crunchy rice...(and as I write about this..I begin to reminisce 12 of my family members gathered around fighting to the last grain).

Living overseas has its perks... great weather..being away from parents (im kidding...) ..and a diverse range of food. One of its pitfalls would be the inability to have every type of cookware..yeah..I know I really love kitchen gadgets. I didn't invest in a claypot..but I did invest in a rice cooker! Let me tell you..not only does it cook toothsome rice..it even has a cake option! Whaat!?? but I haven't explored that far yet. Anyway..it really does make your life easier.. And so I was able to throw everything in and let it cook away. I chopped the sausages into small pieces, and diced the dried shiitakes. I didn't include the edamame since it was already par-cooked..only at the end did I mix it in to keep its bright green color. Traditionally white rice would be used, but I like the nuttiness brown rice has and it's healthier too!

Once everything is done..simply splash some soy sauce..the sausages have quite a bit of salt in them already so go light with the seasoning.

This is the perfect meal really.. you've got your carbs, protein, and vegetables! I love one pot meals....
= less cleaning.







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