Found at Hawker stalls everywhere in Singapore, this poached chicken dish originated from Hainan, and is served with fragrant rice cooked in concentrated chicken broth, ginger and garlic accompanied by a chili sauce, ginger and green onion puree and thick soy sauce and slices of cucumber.

1 3-1/2 lb whole chicken

3 tablespoons kosher salt

3 stalks green onions, smashed

3 1/4 inch slices ginger, smashes

4 stalks cilantro

Seasoned Rice

2 tablespoons canola oil

2 shallots, minced

2 cloves garlic minced

1 tablespoon minced ginger

1 1/2 cups long grain jasmine rice

2 1/2 cups chicken broth

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

Chili Sauce

4 red Fresno chiles, seeded

1 teaspoon tomato paste

2 cloves minced garlic

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

1/2 teaspoon sugar

2 tablespoons canola oil

Green Onion and Ginger Sauce

3 tablespoons grated ginger

5 stalks green onions, finely minced

1 clove garlic, mashed and minced

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sesame oil

3 tablespoons vegetable oil


3 shallots, thinly sliced and deep fried until crisp

1 cup cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced on the bias

To poach the chicken, bring a large stock pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the salt, green onions, ginger and cilantro. Carefully immerse the chicken cavity side down in the boiling water and bring to a second boil, about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pot with a tight lid and let the chicken poach for 50 minutes. Do not lift the lid.

To make the seasoned rice, place a large sauce pan over medium heat and add 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan. Fry the the shallots, garlic and ginger until fragrant and then add the rice to the aromatics, stirring until the rice is well coated with oil. Add the chicken broth and the sesame oil and bring the rice to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, stir the rice and cover with a lid. Let steam for 25 minutes and keep the rice covered until ready to serve.

To make the chili sauce, place the chilis, tomato paste, garlic, vinegar and sugar in a blender and process until a smooth paste forms. Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons of oil and fry the chili paste until it begins to thicken, about 3 minutes. Transfer the chili sauce to a small bowl. Refrigerate up to 1 week.

To make the green onion-ginger sauce, use a mortar and pestle or mini-food processor to grind together the ginger, green onions and garlic to a paste. Transfer the paste to a bowl and stir in the salt and sesame oil. Heat a small saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the vegetable oil and heat until near smoking. Carefully pour the hot oil over the green onion and ginger mixture and stir well. Refrigerate up to 1 week.

To serve, carefully remove the chicken from the poaching liquid and let rest for 10 minutes. With a pair of poultry shears, cut the chicken into pieces with the bone. Transfer the chicken to a warm platter and garnish with fried shallots and cucumber slices. Serve with the warm rice, 2 sauces and poached leafy green vegetables like kai lan or bok choy.