Hainanese Chicken

This is one of the easiest chicken recipes that I’ve made. Easiest and still delicious!! Hainanese chicken is a South East Asian dish that can be easily made at home. Its also versatile so you can add your own personal touches to it.

Start with a whole chicken. Many sources tell you to use the yellow free range chicken and yes it does taste better but if you don’t have it, don’t worry. Use what you have or what you can find.

To make this chicken, fill a pot with water. Just enough to cover the chicken. The less water you use, the more chicken flavour you get in the broth.

To the pot, add 3 green onions (chopped) and 1 inch of ginger.  Season the broth with about 1 tablespoon of salt.

Heat up the water until it starts boiling. As it starts bubbling, move the chicken around. This will help the chicken from sticking to the pot. When the chicken starts cooking it might produce some foam. Scoop the foam out. This will help make your broth clear. Turn the stove to medium-low heat and boil the chicken for about 25-30 minutes. Test the chicken by sticking a fork or knife in  a joint and seeing if the liquid comes out clear. If there is any trace of blood, continue cooking and check again after 10 minutes.

While the chicken is boiling, prepare your ice bath. This will help make the chicken skin tight and firm. If you don’t have ice, take a bowl of water and stick it in the freezer. Take it out right before you take the chicken out of the broth.

Once the chicken is done, place it in the ice bath for about 3-4 minutes. Take it out and pat dry. Rub some sesame oil over the chicken to prevent it from drying out. This will also give the chicken a nice flavour.

Save the soup! This will be used for making the rice. It is also a nice comforting broth to have with your meal.

For the rice, you will need 2 tablespoons of butter or chicken fat, 1 shallot (minced), 1 tablespoon minced ginger, and 3 cloves of garlic (minced). Add all of these ingredients into a frying pan and sauté for a couple minutes to get everything to cook and release the flavours. Add 2 cups of rice and cook for another couple minutes. For an easy cheat, I take the rice and dump everything into a rice cooker! Add the chicken broth from boiling the chicken instead of water and press the button. You will get easy flavoured rice without having to watch the stove top.

To serve the chicken, slice into pieces and serve with your favourite sauces. I like scallion and ginger sauce with my chicken. Add equal parts of chopped scallions and grated ginger. To this add 2-3 tbsp of olive oil (just enough to coat the ingredients and good shake of salt. I normally don’t have a recipe for this because I like mine with a bit more green onions and less salt than what you get at the restaurant. Adjust the flavours to your taste.

Add just a bit of salt to the broth before serving. Enjoy!

Ingredients for Chicken

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 1 inch of ginger
  • 3 green onions
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 table spoon of sesame oil

Ingredients for Rice

  • 2 tablespoons of butter or chicken fat
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 tablespoons minced ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups rice
  • 3 cups of chicken broth from cooking the chicken

Instructions

  1. To make the chicken, place the chicken in a pot and fill with water. Fill just enough to cover the chicken. The less water you use, the more chicken flavour you get in the broth.
  2. To the pot, add 3 green onions (chopped) and 1 inch of ginger.  Season the broth with about 1 tablespoon of salt.
  3. Heat up the water until it starts boiling. As it starts bubbling, move the chicken around. This will help the chicken from sticking to the pot. When the chicken starts cooking it might produce some foam. Scoop the foam out. This will help make your broth clear. Turn the stove to medium-low heat and boil the chicken for about 25-30 minutes. Test the chicken by sticking a fork or knife in  a joint and seeing if the liquid comes out clear. If there is any trace of blood, continue cooking and check again after 10 minutes.
  4. While the chicken is boiling, prepare your ice bath. Once the chicken is done, place it in the ice bath for about 3-4 minutes. Take it out and pat dry. Rub some sesame oil over the chicken to prevent it from drying out. 
  5. For the rice,  mix the  butter or chicken fat, minced shallot, minced ginger, and garlic in a frying pan and sauté for a couple minutes to get everything to cook and release the flavours. Add 2 cups of rice and cook for another couple minutes. For an easy cheat, I take the rice and dump everything into a rice cooker! Add the chicken broth from boiling the chicken instead of water and press the button.
  6. Serve the chicken with your favourite sauces, a bowl of soup and rice.

If you enjoyed this recipe, check out the rest of the recipes on our site.

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