Okayu (Japanese Rice Porridge – お粥)

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  • 1/3 cup short grain Japanese rice (or 1/2 cup if you are using the measuring cup that comes with a rice cooker)
  • 600ml water
  • Pinch salt (optional)
  • 2 umeboshi (Japanese pickled plum), or other toppings such as sesame seeds, chopped scallions, mitsuba (or cilantro), or cooked salted salmon


  1. Put the rice in a rice washing bowl and run cold water over it. Rinse the rice using your hand, in a swirling motion, until the water runs clear. Drain well. If you don’t have a rice washing bowl, put the rice in a medium size bowl and pour a little water in it. Wash the rice in a swirling motion to remove the excess starch, for about 1 minute, and strain the rice through a sieve to drain all the water.
  2. Transfer the rice to a dobabe (earthenware pot), dolsot (cooking stone bowl), or regular pot, and add the water and salt.
  3. Bring the mixture to a boil, stir a few times so the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom, and lower the heat to low. Cover and cook for 35-40 minutes.
  4. Serve with umeboshi or other topping of your choice.


Keywords: gruel, porridge, breakfast, dinner

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