Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Day 275

Mixed Congee with Black Glutinous Rice and Job's Tears: Today brings me to my final find from last week's trip to the Fiesta Farmers Market on Buford Highway. I managed to locate some interesting new foods there, but honestly, none of them really blew me away. That wasn't the market's (or the food's) fault - I just happened to pick some things that I didn't really know what to do with.

I know my faithful readers will probably remember my experience with congee from the first couple weeks of the blog. However, this one I found at the market looked to be extremely different from the version I tasted in Las Vegas. When I saw this canned congee made with black glutinous rice, I knew I had to try it. It also contained something called "Job's Tears," which left me completely mystified. I had no clue what those were, but it's my job to discover these things.
I cracked open the pull-top can tonight before dinner, and the dark, gelatinous-looking contents reminded me of runny instant oatmeal. Not so good. The congee (served hot) that I tried in Vegas looked more like rice pudding, so I was curious to find out how this one compared. There were no instructions on the can regarding heating, so I gave it a go at room temperature.
How was it? Well, the results weren't what I expected. The flavor and texture reminded me of slightly sweet, runny oatmeal, just like the appearance. While the congee I tried in Vegas was more savory, this one seemed more suited to breakfast than lunch or dinner. Other than the black glutinous rice, it also contained oats, cereals, peanuts, and lentils. Oh, and the "Job's Tears?" According to Wikipedia, they're a grain from a tropical plant from the grass family that's reminiscent of cereal or barley.

Not sure I'd try this one again, but I'm definitely glad I got the chance to compare two styles of congee. I'm not even sure if I was supposed to eat this one hot or cold, so if anyone knows, please tell me.

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