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Arroz Caldo (aroskaldo) is a hearty and wholesome comfort food meal you need to try. If you’re not familiar with the dish, it’s a Filipino rice porridge traditionally made with chicken. We are swapping the animal protein for a plant-based alternative to make this dish vegan. Don’t worry, it’s just as flavorful and cozy as the classic!
Here’s What You Need to Make this Arroz Caldo
- Oil: The oil used in this recipe is to cook down our aromatics. We prefer olive oil, but you can also use safflower, avocado, or any other oil.
- Aromatics: The aromatics in this recipe are straightforward. A medium yellow or white onion, 6 garlic cloves, 4 inches of fresh ginger—1/2 thinly sliced and 1/2 finely chopped, bay leaf, and finely chopped green onion or scallions with the white and green parts separated.
- Spices: The spices required for this recipe are minimal. We need red and black pepper and salt. Whole black peppercorns can be used, but we prefer to use ground black pepper.
- Vegan Chicken: A “grilled” style vegan chicken is best for this recipe, which would be anything that isn’t breaded or a nugget. We like to use the Daring Foods original plant chicken, but if you have another brand that you prefer, that works too.
- Vegan Fish Sauce: This is an optional ingredient but will help add some additional flavor. If you can’t find any, you can omit them. Some brands sell vegan fish sauce online if you’re unsure where to find vegan fish sauce. You can also find recipes online if you want to make your own. Here’s one worth trying!
- Glutinous Sweet Rice: Also known as malagkit or sticky rice, glutinous sweet rice is excellent for this recipe because it provides the perfect thick porridge-like texture. It has a slightly sweet taste but has a deliciously chewy and sticky texture. If you don’t have glutinous sweet rice, feel free to use any white on hand.
- Vegan Chicken Broth: Believe it or not, chickenless chicken broth is a thing! It has all of the flavors of chicken broth but without the chicken. We like to use the Better than Bullion No Chicken paste, but there are a few other brands.
- Citrus: A spritz of citrus juice helps take the flavor of this dish to the next level. We like calamansi, but lemon or lime also works.
- Crispy Garlic Bits: The directions to make this are down below. It’s so easy and so freaking good! Crispy golden brown garlic is the perfect garnish and will take the flavor of your arroz caldo to the next level.
- Green Onions (Scallions): We cook the white and light part of the green onions into the arroz caldo, and then top it with the greens when serving.
A Little Bit About Arroz Caldo
- The name is derived from the Spanish arroz caldoso, translating to the phrase “brothy rice.”
- Despite the above tidbit, arroz caldo is an adaptation of congee (a type of rice porridge) brought to the Philipines by Chinese immigrants.
- It’s traditionally served with toppings such as hard-boiled eggs, scallions, crispy garlic, and calamansi, but since we are making this dish vegan today, we are omitting the eggs.
- Arroz Caldo is typically eaten as a breakfast food but is also enjoyed as an afternoon or evening snack.
- It’s also a popular dish to serve when someone is sick or feeling under the weather.
If you enjoyed this Filipino picadillo recipe, you might also like:
- Filipino Adobo Inspired Jerky
- Vegan Filipino Barbecue
- Ube Pichi Pichi (Filipino Sticky Cassava Snack)
- Fluffy Ube Pandesal (Filipino Purple Yam Bread Rolls)
- Vegan Siopao Asado (Filipino Steamed Buns)
- Suman Malagkit (Filipino Steamed Rice Cakes)
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