Basil and Beef Strips Congee

Anna is one of our Acupuncture Fertility Specialists at IA working in Montpelier and soon at our new office at Northeastern Reproductive Medicine in Colchester. She’ll be highlighting a congee that is excellent for building blood and Qi, perfect for fertility, pregnancy and postpartum. Anna’s congee comes from one of our favorite Fertility books- The First Forty Days by Heng Ou. 

This congee is great for everyone with its immune-boosting, magnesium-rich, anti-inflammatory ingredients. 

  • 1 cup short-grain brown rice 
  • ½ cup white rice
  • ½ cup white sticky rice 
  • 3 TBP sesame oil 
  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled and finely chopped 
  • 1 cup thinly sliced white or yellow onion 
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 fresh chili pepper, seeds removed, minced (optional for heat) 
  • 1 TBP granulated cane or coconut sugar 
  • ½ cup soy sauce, tamari or Bragg Liquid Aminos 
  • 1 pound beet (cut of your choice, cut into thin strips 
  • ½ cup roughly chopped fresh basil leaves 
  • Squeeze of fresh lime juice

Vegan Immune Boosting Congee

Jen returns to competition after taking 2nd place last year with an awesome congee that had ALL the toppings. Jen is known for her caring and gentle approach to chronic pain, inflammation and digestive issues with acupuncture care and she brings these influences with her congee entry this year. 

  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 4 cups water, divided
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 to 3 stalks lemongrass, sliced into 3 to 4-inch chunks
  • 2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, add more to taste


  • soy sauce
  • chili oil
  • ground white pepper
  • furikake
  • fried onions
  • finely sliced scallions
  • youtiao (Chinese fried dough sticks)

Kabocha Squash Congee

Jonathan has a treat for us at the Congee Cookoff- Kabocha Squash Congee with ingredients straight from his home organic vegetable garden! Joanthan’s expertise as a sports medicine acupuncturist can be seen through his congee recipe – tons of Qi moving and anti-inflammatory ingredients here. Jonathan also utilizes a lot of Japanese techniques in his gentle style of acupuncture, including offer Sotai, which is a body work style that reeducates the body with gentle passive range of motion exercises. 

What is Kabocha Squash? It’s a squash that is known for its especially sweet flavor. Even sweeter than butternut squash. It has a light, fluffy, velvety texture, and tastes like a combination of sweet potatoes with pumpkin. It’s packed with nutrients like vitamins A and C, some B vitamins, fiber, magnesium, potassium, and antioxidants.

  • 1 cup raw long-grain white rice, rinsed
  • 7 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt, plus more for seasoning
  • One-inch knob of ginger, peeled and sliced thin
  • 1 small kabocha squash (about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • Sliced green onion, for garnish
  • Sesame seed oil or soy sauce, to taste (optional)

Traditional Chicken Congee

Also known as the reigning Congee Cookoff Champion! 

Jean-Luc is the ringer in this competition. A native of Switzerland, Jean-Luc is a formally trained chef with experience cooking around the world, including Asia. 

Jean-Luc returns to competition with his traditional Chicken Congee. Healing, soothing and comforting, this traditional congee is what you may expect in a five star restaurant in Hong Kong or from a delicious street cart in Beijing. Come by the Cookoff and Jean-Luc just may dish out his secrets for creating the most tender chicken ever. 

  • ¾ cup/150 grams sushi rice
  • 2 ½ quarts/2.5 liters chicken stock
  • Salt
  • Soy sauce, for serving
  • Thinly sliced spring onions or scallions, green parts only, for serving
  • Finely chopped fresh ginger, for serving
  • Sesame oil, for serving
  • 12 oz chicken

Vegan Superfood Congee

After 10 years of managing Integrative Acupuncture, Vanessa knows a thing or two about Qi! 

Vanessa is preparing a Vegan Superfood Congee! Sautéed red and yellow peppers, red onions and mushrooms with a dash of soy sauce along with a traditional base of white rice will delight vegans and non vegans with its seasonally sweet and nutritious!

  • 1 cup long-grain rice rinsed
  • 5 cups water
  • 2 cups organic vegetable broth
  • 2 yellow peppers
  • 1 red pepper 
  • 1 orange pepper
  • 1 red onion
  • 8 oz of white button or baby Bella mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 

Cook the first three ingredients in a crockpot on low to desired consistency may need to add liquid if too dry (low setting will take several hours).

Slice vegetables thinly. Add oil to a large skillet over medium heat, toss in vegetables and sauté until softened. 

Spoon congee in a bowl and top with the vegetables and enjoy!

Digest Ease Herbal Congee

Kerry loves using traditional Chinese herbal medicine both in recommendations for acupuncture patients and in food. Kerry’s cooking up a herbal-infused congee using our own Digest Ease Herbal blend. She’ll create a medicinal tea with the herbs and then infuse it into the basic congee rice recipe. 

Try Digest Ease Herbal Congee for IBS, constipation, diarrhea, and fatigue. The Spleen tonic herbs provide a nice digestive boost for anyone. 

  • 7 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 cup raw long-grain white rice, rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 1-inch knob of ginger, peeled and sliced thin
  • Sliced scallions, for garnish
  • Sesame seed oil or soy sauce, for serving (optional)
  • Dang Shen (Codonopsis Pilosula Radix) Codonopsis Root 
  • Fu Ling (Scierotium Poriae Cocos) Poria 
  • Bai Zhu (Rhizoma White Atractylodes Macrocephalae) White Atractylodis 
  • Zhi Ban Xia (Rhizoma Pinelliae Preparatum) Ginger Cured Pinelliae 
  • Chen Pi (Pericarpium Citri Reticulatae) Aged Tangerine Peel 
  • Gan Cao (Radix Glycyrrhizae) Chinese Licorice Root