Anyone who has lived in or visited Singapore would understand my love and constant craving for Chicken Rice with Chinese Greens (Bok Choy). The flavor of Hainanese Chicken Rice is difficult to put into words but its truly addictive. It’s like the American hamburger and fries; Chicken Rice and Bok Choy are enjoyed by all South East Asians. Ok that might not have been the best comparison, but trust me, Hainanese Chicken Rice is delicious!
The chicken is prepared in traditional Hainanese methods which involve the boiling of the entire chicken in a pork and chicken bone stock, reusing the broth over and over and only topping it up with water when needed. This stock is not used for rice preparation, which instead involves chicken stock created specifically for that purpose, producing an oily, flavourful rice sometimes known as “oily rice” with Southeast Asian pandan leaves. Wikipedia
Since I lived in the Woodlands, near SAS (Singapore American School), I had two options for Chicken Rice within walking distance of my house and school:
I probably ate Chicken Rice with Chinese Greens an average of 3 times a week while living in Singapore. What a luxury to have 78 stalls of incredible South East Asian treats at my neighborhood Hawker Center! If only I had appreciated it more when I lived there four years ago.Photo Credit
Here’s my take on Chinese Greens (Baby Bok Choy) done restaurant style:
Recipe adapted from RasaMayalasia.com
Your favorite Chinese greens (I used baby bok choy for my dish)
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon water
1/4 teaspoon cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 dashes of white pepper powder (I used black pepper)
1 teaspoon sesame seeds (optional)
added soy sauce (optional)
2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
1 teaspoon oil
Prepare the garlic oil first by heating up your wok and stir fry the minced garlic until they turn light brown. Dish out and set aside.Heat up a pot of water and bring it to boil. Add two small drops of cooking oil into the water. Drop your vegetables into the boiling water and quickly blanch them for about 20-30 seconds (depends on the quantity).
As soon as they turn slightly wilted, transfer them out and drain the excess water off the vegetables. Arrange the vegetables on a plate.
In a wok, heat up the cooking oil, and then add the oyster sauce, water, sugar, pepper, and sesame seeds. As soon as the sauce heats up and blends well, transfer and drench it over the blanced vegetables. Top the vegetables with the garlic oil and serve immediately.