Along Beach Road within 100m of our office at the Concourse, there are 3 claypot rice stores. This is the best among the three.
Their main dish is the Claypot Chicken Rice ($12/$18/$24/$30) which comes in various sizes tailored for sharing. However, if you’re eating alone, you can ask for an individual portion ($8). This size is $30, enough for 5 persons. Don’t expect to get your food immediately — each portion of claypot rice is cooked upon order.
There are only 4 main ingredients in this claypot rice – deboned chicken pieces (mainly thigh meat which I like), two types of Chinese sausages (the regular red ones and liver sausage black one), salted fish and blanched caixin (choysum). We added another $2 of salted fish – they used the powdery type which are the best for claypot rice as you can crush them to be distributed evenly throughout.
Yew Chuan provides dark soy sauce, flavoured oil, and chilli sauce as condiments to their claypot rice. You can add as much or as little of each into the claypot. A good claypot rice would not have these intense flavours added during the cooking. The rice is cooked clean with the tastes of the ingredients. And then you adjust the oiliness and savoury with the amount of oil and dark soy sauce.
There are many variations on how one would do it. Some would take out all the ingredients and mix the condiments and then return them into the pot. Others will just mix it together. I prefer to take out the salted fish, mix the rest with oil and soy sauce and then return the crushed salted fish back into the claypot. This way, the chicken pieces, sausages and caixin vegetables are coated with the soy sauce, and additional umami from the crushed salted fish is distributed across everything.
Many claypot rice lovers would go head over heels over this layer of burnt rice found at the bottom of the claypot. It is a good sign of excellent cooking from scratch. The burnt rice is crispy with a satisfying smoky taste. It complimented very well with the soft and fluffy rice for that additional crunch. I have weak teeth so I am not such a fan.
One look at Yew Chuan Claypot Rice’s storefront, and you would know they are the real deal. Once you step into Golden Mile Food Centre, look for a tall stack of claypots raring to go on Yew Chuan’s wood-fire stoves. Run by a husband-and-wife duo, the stall has been open for over 10 years now. Apparently, the chef-owner (husband) learnt the craft of cooking claypot rice from his bosses at Lor 33 Geylang before venturing out on his own!
If you are in a rush, this is not the stall for fast food. You will need to wait at least 15 min (for single portion) to 30 min for larger portions. But it is definitely worth the wait.
Yew Chuan Claypot Rice
505 Beach Road, #01-73 Golden Mile Food Centre, Singapore 199583
Date Visited : Mar 2020
A perennial favourite dish in Singapore? For some, the long wait together with friends is part of the enjoyment. 🙂
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