I came to Singapore to eat, and today, I chewed my way through most of the city. I started out with Singapore Hainanese Chicken Rice, which is known as one of the national dishes of Singapore.
Immigrants from Hainan in China brought the dish to Singapore many years ago, and since then, it has undergone some modifications, which distinguish the Singaporean version from the other kinds of chicken rice out there. The most important one is the hot and spicy dipping sauce with garlic, ginger and chili, which is served on the side along with the classic chicken rice condiments such as soy sauce and cucumber.
I had this trip’s first Singapore Hainanese Chicken Rice at Leong Yeow, which is a tiny food stall tucked away in the corner of a court on Waterloo Street. You can choose between roasted or steamed chicken, or do as I did and order half of each for an extra fee. I paid 5.70 SGD in total, and it felt like a bargain. The chicken was juicy and tender and tasted magnificent, but I would have preferred the rice a bit more to the oily side. The chili sauce was slightly chunky and very spicy, and I liked it a lot. I later found out that the sauce is actually the main reason why Leong Yeow is getting so much love.
It was a great meal to kick off the trip with, and it wasn’t too heavy either, so when I later arrived at Orchard station, I was feeling hungry again. What did I eat next? I’ll tell you later.
Leong Yeow Famous Waterloo Street Hainanese Chicken Rice, 261 Waterloo St (inside Waterloo Centre), Singapore