So you’ve had a taste of one of Singapore’s iconic dishes and are now tempted to make your own? Here is a really simple guide on how to make your own Hainanese Chicken Rice!

In cooking chicken rice, there are 3 main components: the chicken, the rice, and the sauce.

Chicken

Before anything else, you’ll have to clean the chicken. You can use a little salt to exfoliate the chicken and clean out dead skin and excess gunk. Then, your rinse all that salt off and dry.

The next thing to do is to season the chicken and put in some stuffing. The typical stuffing for the chicken includes spring onions, a bundle of pandan leaves and some small slices of ginger. You insert all these into the cavity of the chicken and use toothpicks to close it off and prevent the stuffing from falling out.

Then you take a pot and fill it with water enough to immerse the whole chicken in it. Using high heat, bring the water to a boil. Some soak the chicken and leave it immersed until the water boils, but there is also another way to do this. Once the water is boiling, you dunk the chicken a few times before actually leaving it in the water. Then, you cover the pot and lower the heat to keep a simmer for about 10 minutes.

While the chicken is cooking, prepare a bowl of ice water. After the chicken is done cooking, immediately move it to the ice bath you prepared. This process keeps the skin tight and firm.

Once done, remove the stuffing, chop the chicken into pieces and arrange on the serving plate.

Rice

Depending on how many people are eating, you should be able to determine how many cups of rice you’re going to cook with. You will then wash the rice to get rid of any dust and excess starch. Drain out the water and wash again 2 more times. Then, fill the bowl with water and leave it for 10-15 minutes.

Once that’s done, heat cooking oil in a wok or a pot over medium high heat.  When it gets hot enough, it’s time to put in the ginger and garlic. Make sure you won’t burn them though, so add the drained rice and mix well.

After a minute, you should then add some of the broth you used to boil the chicken with. Use a 1:1 ratio for the broth to equal how many cups of rice you’ve put. Then, turn the heat to low and let it cook for 15 minutes.

Finally, remove from the heat and let it sit for 5 more minutes.

Sauce

Chilli sauce is quite easy to make, though you’ll need a blender. Wash and cut the stalks off of a chilli padi and big chilli. Peel ginger and garlic. Add everything to a blender and let it blend well. And you’re done!