Khao Man Gai, the Thai version of Hainanese Chicken Rice, has been in the media a lot lately, as the first Khao Man Gai restaurant straight from Bangkok opened their first shop in Shibuya last month. I decided to try it out at home, as I found out it could be easily done with a rice cooker.
Khao Man Gai (for 2 persons)
1 chicken thigh (250 g, boneless)
Hint of salt
Hint of white pepper
1 1/2 go (180 cc) rice
1 tbs sake
1/2 tsp chicken broth powder
1 tsp nam pla fish sauce
3 slices of ginger
5 cm leek
1/2 cucumber sliced diagonally
Some coriander leaves
1 glove of garlic (peeled and minced)
1 cm piece of ginger (peeled and minced)
1 tsp nam pla
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp miso paste
1 tsp sugar
1 tbs lemon juice
2 tbs water
1-2 red chilis
1) Wash the rice and let it stand in water for 30 minutes (depending on the type of rice you use, this might not be needed).
2) Cut out excess fat from the chicken, and sting the meat thoroughly with a fork to make it tender. Rub some salt and white pepper to the meat.
3) Cut the ginger (leave the skin on) and leek. Crush the leek a little bit with the side of a knife.
4) Put the rice, sake, chicken broth powder, nam pla, as well as sliced ginger and leek in a rice cooker. Add a little bit less water than usually.
5) Put the chicken on the top of the rice and turn the cooker on.
6) Mix the ingredients of the sauce. Adjust the saltiness to your liking by adding more soy sauce and miso, and hotness by increasing the amount of chili.
7) When the cooker finishes, take the meat out (be careful, as it is hot and really tender) as well as ginger and leek. Mix the rice well and divide to serving plates.
8) Cut the chicken to slices and put on the top of the rice. Garnish with cucumber slices and coriander leaves. Serve with the sauce.
I used brown rice for health reasons, even though white jasmine rice would look nicer with chicken. I also made some daikon salad in som tam style to go with the chicken rice; if you can find green papaya you can try to make the real som tam.