Tag Archives: Singapore Food Festival

Hainanese Chicken Rice (Singapore variation)

A Singaporean describes it this way: Part of the whole ritual in eating this dish is smothering your cream-coloured chicken fat laced rice with ribbons of sweet dark soy sauce, chilli sauce and pounded ginger and to mix it all together, matching flavour for flavour.

hainanese-chicken-rice
Hainanese Chicken Rice is one of the primary specialties of Singapore and is often considered the country’s national dish. Filipinos love it for its flavorful, uncomplicated taste. Every time I am in Singapore, I always order Hainanese Chicken Rice. Mixing the chicken meat with the dip with the rice was just so heavenly. It must be the ginger and garlic flavors that brings out the flavors.

hainanese-chicken-rice1
Let me share this simple recipe which I am sure you will enjoy cooking. It is simple.

Ingredients:


For chicken:

12 cups water

4 fresh ginger, peeled and sliced

1 teaspoon salt

3 cloves garlic, peeled

1 whole chicken

2 tablespoons sesame oil

2 teaspoons soy sauce

For rice:

2-3 cups Jasmine rice

Vegetable oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 fresh ginger, peeled and sliced

6 cups reserved stock from boiling chicken

2 tablespoons sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tomatoes, sliced

2 cucumbers, sliced

Procedure:

For chicken:
1. Bring 12 cups of water with ginger, salt and garlic to a boil in a large pot.
2. Put chicken in the boiling water and let it simmer for 5 minutes.
3. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and let the chicken cool for 20 minutes.
4. Repeat the boiling and cooling process one more time.
5. Set chicken aside when cooked and tender.
6. Remember to reserve the chicken stock for the rice.
7. Plunge the chicken into ice-cold water for 5 minutes to prevent over cooking and to tighten its skin.
8. Brush on a mixture of sesame oil and soy sauce on the chicken, then let it cool at room temperature.

For rice:
1. Wash rice thoroughly and drain.
2. Heat vegetable oil in a pot and fry garlic and ginger until golden brown.
3.Add the drained rice and fry for 3 to 4 minutes before pouring in 6 cups of chicken stock and adding sesame oil and salt.
4. Cook the rice uncovered until the broth is absorbed.
5. Finally, cover the pot tightly and reduce the temperature until the rice is cooked.
6. Cut the chicken into pieces, then serve over the rice and garnish with tomatoes and cucumbers.
7. Add chili sauce or other spices to taste.

The Satay and Hainanese Chicken Rice recipes are just simple tastebud teasers to give food lovers an idea of what the annual food festival has to offer. After savoring a preview of what Chinese cuisine-infused Singaporean food is all about, expect a bigger culinary feast in next year’s Singapore Food Festival.

Log on to www.YourSingapore.com for more information.

How to Cook Singapore Chilli Crab

singapore-chilli-crab

Tsiju Culinary Arts shared this Singapore Chilli Crab recipe which is one of the most popular dish in Singapore hawker centers. It is sometimes known as Singapore’s unofficial “national dish” which had its humble beginnings in the country itself. In the 1950s, Madam Cher Yam Tian had a hawker stall right on the seashore, and she spent her time everyday from dusk till the wee hours of the morning cooking by the light of a kerosene lamp. One of Madam Cher’s specialities? Live crabs in a zesty chilli-spiked gravy, the first version of the Singapore chilli crab.

The recipe looks simple but I still have to try it. Just substitute the ingredients that I noted in the closed parenthesis.

Ingredients

1 Sri Lanka Crab (of course use our local crabs, the bigger the better)
3 tbsp. Canola oil
8 cloves garlic, chopped
8 fresh chili, chopped
2 eggs
2 spring onions, sliced
1 ginger, grated
2 tablespoon lime juice (or substitute with calamansi or lemon juice)
2 tabsp sugar
4 tbsp ketchup
1 teaspoon cornflour (substitute with corn starch)
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Mix the following for the sauce

1 cup water
4 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cornflour
1/4 teaspoon salt

Method

1.Heat the oil in a wok over high heat.

2. Add garlic and stir-fry for 1 minutes.

3. Add the chilli, stir-fry till fragrant and then the crab.

4. Fry well till shell starts turning red.

5. Add sauce ingredients.

6. Cover with lid and simmer.

7. Break eggs. Stir in spring onions and lemon juice.

Ready to serve.

The dish has evolved into many innovations:

1. some are packed with fresh spices like galangal, ginger, and turmeric,

2. some are sweet-sour and rosy with tomato, others are ribboned with beaten egg, and still others carry the sting of chilli oil.

So you can also try to innovate the Singapore Chilli Crab recipe and make it your very own.

You might want to read my food trip at the Singapore Food Festival five years ago.

or just view this youtube video

Satay

Satay

I am sure you want to learn recipes from other countries. One of my favorite Singapore dish in the 2010 Singapore Food Festival is Satay. It is skewered barbecued meat, usually chicken (Satay Ayam), beef (Satay Lembu) and mutton (Satay Kambing), dipped and eaten with a delectable peanut sauce. Satay originated from Indonesia but also popular in many other Southeast Asian countries, such as: Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Thailand, the southern Philippines and in the Netherlands, as Indonesia is a former Dutch colony.

INGREDIENTS

For satay:
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 large onion, chopped
1 stalk lemongrass, minced
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 kilo chicken or beef, sliced into 2-inch portions
Bamboo skewers

For peanut sauce:
1/2 cup salted roasted peanuts
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 stalk lemongrass
Vegetable oil
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon brown sugar
2 teaspoon dried tamarind, soaked
1 teaspoon salt
Continue reading Satay

Traditional Braised Duck

singapore-heavenly-chefs

During the Singapore food festival 2010, I had the pleasure of meeting the Heavenly chefs (Mr Sin Leong and Mr Hooi Kok Wai of Dragon Phoenix and Red Star Restaurant) to showcase three very authentic and old school Cantonese dishes not popularly found today in menu menus like the Shunde Wild Pheasant , the Deep Fried Golden Pearls and a good old traditional braised duck. These recipes are not for beginners but of course you can try them.

Origin of the traditional braised duck
braised-duck

In Canton province of China, during festivals such as Cheng Ming, harvesting, etc., people used to gather in the ancestral hall to celebrate and thanks their ancestors for blessings given.

On such occasions, foods such as roast duck, roast meat, chicken etc., were brought as offerings. After some prayers, all these foods were placed into a big pot and stewed into a pot-luck delicacy where people gather around sharing the joy of the occasion.

Such practices initiated the creation of the famous Cantonese Dish “Peng Cai”. The “Traditional Braised Duck” is one of these “Peng Cai” dishes which uses duck as the main ingredient.
Besides offering a harmonic combination of textures and flavors, this dish has a symbolic cultural significance as it symbolized unity and the sharing of joy. In the 40s, this dish was “migrated” together with a group of Cantonese immigrant into Singapore and became a popular dish in Chinese banquets.
Continue reading Traditional Braised Duck