Hainanese Chicken Rice

Hainanese Chicken Rice with three sauces Blog

🍽 Serves:

🕑 Cooking Time:
1hr 30mins

Prep Time:

The Ingredients List

  • Whole Chicken (2kg)
  • 6 stalks Spring Onions – 3 for broth, 3 for stuffing
  • 4 Pandan leaves – 2 for broth, 2 for stuffing
  • 12 Garlic Cloves (crushed) – 6 for broth, 6 for stuffing
  • 8cm Ginger (sliced into 4) – 2 slices for broth, 2 for stuffing
  • 1 Lemon Grass (cut into 3) – 2 cuts for broth, 1 cut for stuffing
  • ½ tablespoon Sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon Table Salt
  • 1 Cucumber (thinly sliced)
  • Ice cubes

Chicken Rice

  • 2 cups of Rice (Jasmine)
  • 4 Garlic cloves (minced)
  • 5cm Ginger (sliced into 3)
  • 2 Shallots (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon Sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon Table Salt
  • 2 Pandan leaves
  • Chicken Fat from the chicken

Drizzling Sauce for Chicken

  • 4 tablespoons Chicken Broth from poaching chicken
  • 1 tablespoon Sesame Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Light Soy Sauce

Soup (served as side)

  • Table Salt
  • White Ground Pepper
  • Spring Onion (finely chopped)
  • Fried Shallots
  • Chicken Broth from poaching chicken

Sauces 1: Ginger-Garlic-Spring Onion Sauce

  • 20cm Ginger (roughly chopped)
  • 2 stalk Spring Onion (chopped)
  • 2 Garlic Clove
  • 5 tablespoons Canola Oil
  • A pinch of Salt

Sauce 2: Sweet Dark Soy Sauce

  • ⅓  cup Water
  • 3 tablespoon Rock sugar
  • ⅓  cup Dark Soy Sauce

Sauce 3: Chilli-Ginger Sauce

  • 6 Red Chillies (roughly chopped)
  • 8cm Ginger (roughly chopped)
  • 3 Garlic cloves
  • ½ teaspoon Sesame Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Table Salt
  • ½ teaspoon White Sugar
  • Juice from 1 wedge of a Lime
  • 1 tea spoon Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 2-3 tablespoons Chicken Broth from poaching chicken

The Method

  1. Prepare broth: Boil 4 Litres of water (or enough to fully cover the chicken), add pandan leaves, spring onions, lemon grass, garlic gloves, ginger and salt to the pot. Allow to boil for at least 15 minutes.
  2. Prepare chicken: Whilst broth is simmering, prepare the chicken. Clean and exfoliate the chicken by sprinkling Kosher Salt on all surfaces, including inside the cavity, and give it a good rub. Then rinse and wash the salt off the chicken well. Check the chicken for its fat and trim it off. It is usually around the neck or bottom. Save it for the rice later on. Stuff spring onion, pandan leaves, lemon grass, garlic cloves and ginger inside the chicken cavity and seal with toothpicks, ready to dip in broth.
  3. Dipping the chicken: Submerge the chicken in the boiling broth for 1 minute, then take it out and run it under cold water to immediately cool it down for approximately 30 seconds. Next, completely dip the chicken back in the boiling broth for a few seconds, until the bubbling from cavities stop, and lift the whole chicken out of the pot. Make sure all the water in the chicken drains back into the pot. Repeat this step two more times.
  4. Poaching the chicken: Completely submerge the chicken back to the pot again. Try to avoid the chicken from touching the base of the pot in order to avoid burning. Wait for the broth to come to a boil, then turn off the heat for 20 minutes or until the temperature of the broth reaches below or at 70°C. Heat the broth again until it boils and this should take about 10 minutes, then turn the heat of once again. Leave the chicken to poach for another 20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches at least 70°C.
  5. Prepare ice bath (cold water with ice cubes) in a pot large enough to fit the chicken. Remove the chicken from the broth pot and carefully submerge it in the ice bath for 20 minutes.
  6. Take chicken out of the ice bath and drain excess water from the cavity. Rub the whole chicken with about 2 drops of sesame oil. De-bone and slice chicken, ready to serve with cucumber slices, rice, sauces and soup.

The Chicken Rice

  1. Wash and soak 2 cups of rice for 20 minutes, leave aside after to drain excess water.
  2. Get 5 cups of chicken broth and pour it in a separate small pot (used for rice cooking). Add in salt and pandan leaves. Let it simmer on low heat. Ensure to maintain at least 4 cups worth of liquid for rice cooking. Add more broth if needed, as it will reduce over time.
  3. In a wok/saucepan, render chicken fat (If none, substitute with 1 tablespoon butter) about half way then remove it and put in the rice cooking pot. Add sliced ginger into wok/saucepan and fry until aromatic, then add the minced shallots and sesame oil. Stir for 1 minute and transfer all to the rice cooking pot.
  4. Preheat oven 150°C.
  5. Add rice into the rice cooking pot (again, there should be about 4 cups of liquid in the pot) and let it cook on low heat for about 20 minutes. Cover with lid making sure to leave it slightly open in the beginning to prevent spilling of liquid. Fully close with lid after about 10 minutes. You want the rice to be slightly wet when its done, but with no leftover broth liquid at the base.
  6. Transfer rice onto a baking tray and spread evenly. Oven bake for 10 minutes. Ready to serve.

Sauce 1: Ginger-Garlic-Spring Onion Sauce

Grind ginger and garlic very well, preferably in a food processor. Heat oil in a small saucepan, then fry the ginger and garlic on low heat until fragrant and slightly caramelized. Add a pinch of salt. Set aside to cool. Serve in a sauce dish.

Sauce 2: Sweet Dark Soy Sauce

In a small sauce pan, heat water and rock sugar on low heat. Stir constantly until sugar fully dissolves. This can take awhile. It will eventually become a thickened syrup, then add the dark soy sauce and stir to combine. Set aside to cool. Serve in a sauce dish.

Sauce 3: Chilli-Ginger Sauce

Grind chilli, ginger, garlic very well, preferably in a food processor. Add sesame oil, salt, sugar, vinegar and lime juice and pulse a couple times again. Transfer to a small bowl and add chicken broth, and mix. If you want a thicker sauce, add less broth. Serve in a sauce dish.

Drizzle Sauce for Chicken

Mix in a small bowl, the chicken broth, sesame oil and light soy sauce. Drizzle over chopped up chicken and cucumber slices.

Soup served as side

Once chicken is placed in the ice bath. Continue simmering broth over low heat. When most of the dish is ready to serve, discard or sift out the contents, season with salt and ground white pepper to your taste. Serve in a small bowl. Add in some chopped spring onions and fried shallots.