Dried Scallop Rice Soup

Dried Scallop Rice Soup

I don’t know about you but I like eating soup as it is my all-time favorite comfort food.  When I saw Maangchi making this abalone porridge, it reminded me of the similar rice soup I made often in the distant past using fresh seafood (scallop & shrimp) and white fish and very occasionally with chicken.  Maangchi’s recipe inspires me to take this familiar dish dressing it up with Korean flavour (sesame oil and roasted seaweed nori)  and sends me on a search for some fish to be the main flavour of the soup.

Upon reading about dried scallop I decide to use it because I think this salted version of scallop would impart a lot of taste to the soup.  And I was right for this soup packs a wallop of umami from the scallop alone. You wouldn’t need to season it with anything else but I recommend a bit of fish sauce which enhances the already flavorful soup with yet another complex umami.  If you like me, a pinch of sea salt would tight everything together but it is not necessary as the broth has plenty of salt from the dried fish and fish sauce.

I thought the use of diced carrot is brilliant for it brightens up the mostly white soup and nicely contrasts the bright and dark green color of spring onion and seaweed.  I love fresh ginger so use it generously in my version of the recipe.

I won’t describe how it good tastes but I tell you this:  it is food for the soul and feast for the eyes.  So good so that when I offered some to friends they came back asking for more and wanted to learn how to make it.  Go ahead make some and discover it for yourself.  It freezes well only if there would be any leftover.

Let’s make the soup, shall we.

Ingredients:

100 g dried scallop, no color-dyed &  preservatives

1 heaping Cup uncooked rice **

2 Liters spring or filtered water

minced garlic

1-2 inches fresh ginger, julienned or coarsely chopped

1 small carrot, diced

2 Tablespoons sesame oil, preferred roasted kind

1 to 2 teaspoons fish sauce

sea salt as needed

https://i2.wp.com/farm5.static.flickr.com/4134/4908894959_94d5d90387_z.jpg

soaked dried scallop and soaked rice

Garnish:

green onion, thinly sliced — highly recommended

Korean roasted seaweed seasoned with sesame oil  —  an absolute must-have

Shichimi, Japanese 7-spice hot pepper

garlic chili sauce

** I use Haiga rice or Japanese short-grain rice.  If you use other type of rice, add an extra 1 to 2 Tablespoons of glutinous rice (sticky rice).

I do not rinse Haiga rice but other types of rice.


Method:

1. Soak rice and scallop separately in water, for at least 2 hours before cooking.

soaked dried scallop and soaked rice

Soaked Scallop & Rice in Water

2.  Prepare garlic, ginger and carrot.

Prep garlic, ginger & carrot

Prep garlic, ginger & carrot

3.  Drain the rice and scallop, reserve the soaking liquid.   Add more water to measure 1.5 liter or about 6 ¼ cups.

prep all ingredients before cooking

prep all ingredients before cooking

4.  Preheat a large soup pot over medium heat.  Add the sesame oil, ginger, garlic, carrot and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes.  Do not brown the garlic.

Sauté the herbs and carrot

Sauté the herbs and carrot in sesame oil

5.  Add the scallop and rice.  Continue sautéing to well coat the rice with oil.

Sauté all ingredients

Sauté all ingredients

6.  Continue stirring and cooking until the rice grains look translucent, about 5 to 7 more minutes.

the well sautéed ingredients just before adding liquid

the well sautéed ingredients just before adding liquid

7.  Add the measured liquid to the pot.  Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to simmer.  Cover the pot with a lid.

adding liquid

adding liquid

8.   Cook until the rice is well expanded, about 50 to 60  minutes; stirring occasionally.

9.  In the meantime, prepare the green onion and wash the dishes.  Crumble the seasoned roasted seaweed in a plastic bag.

chopped green onion

chopped green onion

10.  Add the fish sauce.  Add more water to thinning the soup if it’s too thick for your taste.

11.  Season with sea salt only if necessary and cook for about 5 more minutes.  The soup should have a creamy consistency by now.

12.  Turn off the heat.  Ladle the soup in a bowl and garnish with the condiments.

Soup with the condiments

Soup with the condiments

13.  Enjoy.

Enjoy the hearty tasty soup

Enjoy the hearty tasty soup

I particularly enjoy this soup with an egg simmering slowly in a serving portion to poach its white and yolk to a softness perfection.   Heavenly!

Poaching an egg in a serving-portion soup

Poaching an egg in a serving-portion soup

In a spicier version with a quarter teaspoon of garlic chili sauce.  Yummy spicy!

And those tender pieces of scallop just melt as soon as they touch your tongue.  I can’t get enough of this soup.  Addictive!

Tender scallop rice soup

Tender scallop rice soup