Hainanese chicken rice

 Rice Today   |  
Hainanese chicken rice. (Photo: IRRI)

Hainanese chicken rice. (Photo: IRRI)

Serves 4–6

Time: 1½ hours, plus resting

A classic Singaporean/Malay dish developed by immigrants from the southern Chinese island of Hainan.

Chili-garlic sauce:  5 fresh red chilies; 2-cm chunk of ginger; 3 garlic cloves; 1/4 teaspoon salt; 1 teaspoon lime juice; 2 tablespoons chicken stock (from the boiled chicken)

Ginger sauce:  75 grams ginger; 6 garlic cloves; 1/2 teaspoon salt; 1 teaspoon lime juice; 2 tablespoons chicken stock (from the boiled chicken)

Sauce for chicken: 1 tablespoon garlic oil; 1 teaspoon sesame oil; 5 tablespoons light soy sauce; 1½ tablespoons sugar (to taste); 3 tablespoons chicken broth (from boiled chicken)


Hainanese chicken rice ingredientsChicken and rice
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Add chicken to pot (completely submerge) along with smashed garlic and sliced ginger. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook for 10 minutes. Turn off heat and let chicken remain in water, covered, for 45–60 minutes or until it is cooked through.

Remove chicken from pot (keep the stock) and let it cool to room temperature. Put the peanut oil in a frying pan over medium heat (add trimmed chicken fat if desired). When oil is hot, add shallots and remaining garlic. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Add rice and stir until glossy. Add 4 cups of the chicken stock and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for about 20 minutes, until rice has absorbed all the liquid. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Chili-garlic and ginger sauces
Add all ingredients into a blender, and mix until ingredients are well blended. Add salt or sugar to taste.

 To serve

Chop chicken (keep or discard skin, as preferred). Put chicken and rice on plates and garnish with cucumbers, remaining spring onions, and cilantro. Combine ingredients for the chicken sauce and drizzle over the chicken. Serve with sauces and a bowl of the remaining stock.


Adapted from the New York Times

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