Eat Singapore Chicken Rice at Ah Tai
The line for chicken rice is so long!
Let’s check out this one…
Ah Tai Chicken Rice tl;dr
- Hainanese Chicken Rice
- Sauces and broth
- Tasty and Convenient
Every country has a list of dishes that people identify as the purely belonging to that country. While there is a lengthy list of signature dishes available, Hainanese chicken rice is considered the national dish of Singapore. There are many people who make this dish with slight variations:
- Spice blend of sauce
- How tender the chicken is
- How pungent the rice is
At the end of the day this dish is boiled chicken with chicken broth infused rice.
Not to boast, but before moving to Singapore, I used to make chicken rice at home in nearly the same way as was prescribed to me by my mother-in-law. I’ve made it many times, always tweaking the recipe ever so slightly trying to find the right combination of flavors and technique. After after moving here, I find that it is easier and often times cheaper to simply walk across the street and pick up an order of chicken rice versus making it myself.
Classic Chicken Rice Meal
Not All Chicken Rices Are the Same
At Maxwell Food Centre, a famous collection of hawker stalls under one roof, there are nearly a dozen hawker stalls that sell chicken rice. A lot of these hawkers are even in the same aisle, some next to each other. I’ve had the chance to go down the aisle trying them all out;
- The famous one that everyone lines up
- One’s that are very popular among locals
- A bunch of them in between
There are differences between each hawker that I’ve tried. Whether that difference comes down to the tenderness of the chicken, the blend of dipping sauces they make, or how pungent their rice is; there is always something. Of course, people’s tastes are different, so I think this is a good thing so that people can tailor their meal to their tastes and get what they enjoy the most.
My Personal Favorite
While having tried many and have cooked this simple dish myself many times, Ah Tai Hainanese Chicken Rice is by far hands down my favorite chicken rice place to go to. Something about their entire package just simply resonates with my particular set of taste buds. It doesn’t hurt that it isn’t as expensive as some of the other stalls nor is there ever a long line.
Ah Tai Chicken Rice Store Front
While their chili sauce and rice is relatively comparable to the rest of the chicken rice hawkers, I find that their chicken is just as tender while the chicken au jus is a touch sweeter and saltier than the other variations.
Chicken Rice For You
Go here, there, everywhere and try the dish chicken rice. You’ll find what you like and find ones you don’t like. Hopefully you’ll be able to find the right one for you beyond the hype of awards or popularity. I have yet to have a dish so horrible that made me sick (except for a certain fruit that isn’t durian which I will talk about later).
Go find your foodie self!
Where’s your favorite chicken rice in Singapore?