Asian chicken rice

Hainanese chicken rice

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This recipe is a two parter, but is well worth the effort. If you don’t feel like making your own chicken stock, ensure you buy a good quality one.

I love having my freezer loaded with stock (or broth…if I was a hipster) as it adds so much depth to recipes and is great to have on hand just to drink at tea-time when my gut can’t handle anymore food.


Hainanese Chicken Rice (serves two) *

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 2 cups of chicken stock (recipe to follow), enough to cover breasts (chicken that is…)
  • Thumb size piece of ginger, grated, plus half a thumb of ginger grated.
  • 2 garlic cloves, smooshed (omit if doing low FODMAPs)
  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 1/2 – 1 cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons of white vinegar (optional)
  • 1/2 red chilli (optional)
  • 2 spring onions
  • Sesame oil
  • Chilli paste (I have always have one in the fridge from one of the ladies of the CWA)
  • Corinader (optional – omit if if tastes like soap to you).

Put the grated ginger, garlic, stock and chicken into a pot.

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 30 – 40 minutes (until chicken is just cooked through).

Take one cup of hot stock and add rice to a small pot. Bring to the boil, put the lid on the pot and reduce heat and let simmer until water is gone. Turn off and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.


Whilst chicken is cooking make your side dishes.

Combine ginger, finely chopped spring onion and sesame oil together (you can use a mortar and pestle or blitz them to a paste if you like).

Cut your cucumber lengthwise. You can either leave it like this or add the vinegar, some coriander and chilli to it to make a quick pickle.

Your choice of chilli paste.

To serve

Put the chicken and rice on the plate.

Add the green ginger sauce, cucumber and chilli.

Put the leftover chicken broth in a bowl and sip alongside this nourishing meal.


Aromatic chicken broth *

Stock is so forgiving. You can add just about anything to them and they’ll taste pretty fine. One key thing is to add abut 1/4 cup of Apple Cider Vinegar to the water when you start out.

In a large pot add

  • 1 chicken frame (I have started buying whole chickens and breaking them down – thanks Masterchef!). If you don’t want to do that, you can generally buy them from you butcher or save the carcass from a roast chook. My freezer is filled with wonderous things…

Your choice of aromatics. This stock had:

  • Galangal
  • Ginger
  • Lemon Grass
  • Turmeric (whole – not powdered)
  • Limes – halved
  • Coriander root (I never seem to use all the coriander when I buy it, so I’ve taken to putting it in the freezer, ready for a stock)
  • Kaffir lime leaves
  • Dried chilli
  • Himalayan sea salt
  • Whole black pepper
  • Carrot
  • Celery

You will be able to get most of these things from an Asian supermarket. Again, put them in the freezer for use at a later date.

Cover with filtered water and let percolate (I use a simmer mat) for as long as you can. Ideally for a minimum of four hours (up to 24 hours).

Strain through a muslin cloth and portion off your stock into containers to go in the freezer.

This can be enjoyed on its own or as part or added to soups and stews.

In health,


* I’m not great with measurements as I tend to ‘make it up’ as I go along (bit like life really!).