Claypot chicken rice (瓦煲鸡饭) is a common dish in both Malaysia and Singapore. These days, liquefied petroleum gas stoves are used by most restaurants to cook this popular dish. However, there are some rare ones that still use charcoal to cook the rice.
One of the most popular restaurants to try out this dish in Singapore is Geylang Claypot Rice (芽笼瓦煲饭). Be prepared to wait for 30 minutes upon ordering as each pot is prepared from scratch.
The piping hot claypot rice came with a reasonable portion of chunky chicken, 2 types of waxed sausages (lup cheong), salted fish and stalks of vegetables. Before digging in, you need to dribble in the dark soy sauce and give it a thorough toss with the ladle to ensure all the ingredients are mixed properly.
Taste wise, it was good with the succulent chicken well marinated and the salted fish added to its aroma. However, I personally felt that the rice a little hard and dry. There was even quite a bit of burnt rice crust left in the pot.
Back home, my favourite place for a piping hot claypot chicken rice is Hometown Claypot Chicken Rice (家乡瓦煲鸡饭), a stall operating inside Restoran Sorn, Taman Paramount, Petaling Jaya. The stall is run by an old man wearing sunglasses. As he continuously works on the row of claypots over charcoal fire, usually one doesn’t need to wait long to be served upon ordering.
As soon as the cover is opened, there is a noticeable aromatic and smoky aroma. Every pot comes with a generous amount of well marinated tender chicken, waxed sausages, rice and chopped spring onions. Salted fish can also be added at additional cost.
The seasoning is added just before it is served, it just needs a good toss for all the ingredients to mix well before digging in. The rice is cooked just to the right texture and not too dry with very little burnt rice crust. Some might prefer it drier though but it’s just perfect for my taste.
If you fancy having claypot chicken rice while you are in Singapore or Petaling Jaya, why not pop by Geylang Claypot Rice (芽笼瓦煲饭) and Hometown Claypot Chicken Rice (家乡瓦煲鸡饭). And do let me know your verdict :).