by Melanie Minnaar, mom to ‘archangels’, Michael and Gabriel, Managing Director of  Halo – a full service advertising agency, founder of SA Twitter Blanket Drive #TBDZA). If she wasn’t in marketing she would be an activist for meaningful change and worthy causes. You can follow her on twitter

Here is a very easy Chinese alternative to chicken soup for colds, flu and whenever comfort food is required. It’s a Cantonese dish call Jook. Can also be made with pork. The dish should resemble a thick, glutinous porridge consistency. The rice will be typically ‘overcooked’ by Western standards. Brown rice can also be used but then allow for longer cooking time.


2 tbsp oil

2 tbsp ginger juice

2 tbsp dry sherry


4 tsp sugar

1 whole chicken

2 cups white rice

1 cup reconstituted Chinese mushrooms

1 bunch spring onions, chopped

Sesame oil

Soya sauce and chilli to taste


1. Bring a large stock pot of water to the boil. Add the ginger juice, sherry, salt and sugar. Add the chicken to the pot and bring the water back to the boil. Simmer for 1 hour.

2. Remove the chicken carefully from the pot. Remove the bones and shred the meat using 2 forks.  Add the meat back to the pot with the rice and sliced chinese mushrooms. Bring back to the boil then simmer for 20 minutes.

3. Sprinkle with chopped spring onions and a drizzle of sesame oil to serve.

4. Serve with soya sauce and chilli on the side.


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