The Hainanese chicken rice ranks high as one of Singaporeans’ favourite dishes. You can recreate this comforting and homely dish at home with this recipe by Chef Ambrose Poh of Allspice Institute cooking school. Plus, don’t miss the videos to learn how to blanch the chicken to tender perfection, and how to chop it up to serve in style.
Watch this video guide:
Watch this video guide:
- 1.2 kg whole chicken
- 2 tsps salt
- 3 L water
- 3 pieces fresh ginger, sliced and smashed
- 4 fresh red chillies, chopped
- 4 fresh chilli padi
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tbsps fresh lime juice
- 1 tbsp hot chicken fat
- 2 cups jasmine rice, rinsed and drained
- 4 shallots, thinly sliced
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsps vegetable oil
- 4.5 cups, chicken stock
- 2 tbsps light soy sauce
- 4 tbsps sesame oil
- 2 sprigs fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tsps sugar
- 2 tsps chicken seasoning
- Sliced cucumber and tomatoes for garnishing
- Black sweet sauce, if preferred
CHICKEN Add salt salt and ginger into a 10-litre pot wide enough to hold the chicken. When water is boiling put chicken breast down, turn off the heat and cover.
After 5 mins, take out the chicken and return water to a boil. Put in the chicken, this time back down, turn off heat and cover.
After 5 mins, take out the chicken again and return water to a boil. This time, put in chicken and continue to simmer, partially covered, 20 mins. Let chicken stand in hot broth, covered and undisturbed, until just cooked through (15 mins).
Let broth drain from chicken cavity into pot, transfer chicken to a large bowl of ice and cold water, to stop the cooking. Reserve broth for rice and soup.
Cool chicken completely, turning once. Drain chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Cut into serving pieces and set aside.
CHICKEN RICE Heat up oil in a fry pan. Cook shallots over moderate heat, stirring, until browned. Add garlic and cook, stirring, 1 min.
Add shallots, garlic and oil to rice in rice cooker. Mix gently. Add 3 cups reserved chicken broth. Cook rice.
CHILLI SAUCE Pulse all the chilli sauce ingredients to a coarse paste in mini food processor. Set aside.
SOY-SESAME GRAVY Mix together soy sauce, sugar, chicken seasoning and sesame oil. Set aside.
To serve, drizzle gravy over chicken. Serve chicken with cucumber and tomato slices, and individual bowls of rice and chilli sauce. Serve the broth as soup.
Photo: Andy Wong/Rave Photography