1 publish
1131859

Food

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice 永年瓦煲鸡饭: The Best Traditional Malaysia-Style Claypot Rice In Clementi

Last Updated: May 22, 2019

Written by Lee Wei Yang

With countless claypot rice speciality stalls out there, one has to be really good in order to stand out.

I heard about this relatively new stall in Clementi which opened in 2018, so I decided to head down to see if it was that good.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 1

Located just a five-minute walk away from Clementi MRT station, Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice (永年瓦煲鸡饭) is run by Reiko, the owner.

We were intrigued to find out that the stall actually has roots in Malaysia.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 18

It turns out that Reiko hails all the way from Taiping, Malaysia. Back there, her father used to run an empire of claypot rice stalls which dates back to 1983.

Upon retiring, Reiko’s father handed over all his secrets to his relatives so that they could continue the business.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 2

Today, many of Reiko’s relatives run their own claypot rice stalls in Malaysia. Though they don’t use the name of the original stall, the recipes they use are from Reiko’s father.

Since moving to Singapore 14 years ago, Reiko had always wanted to carry on her father’s claypot rice legacy. But it wasn’t until 2018 when she finally opened the stall, the first and only in Singapore amongst her relatives.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 3

Reiko uses a specific type of claypots in order to stick to her father’s traditional cooking methods.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 31

The claypots she uses are specially handcrafted and imported from her hometown. As such, you won’t be able to find them anywhere in Singapore.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 6

Reiko prepares the ingredients for her Claypot Chicken Rice 瓦煲飯 (S$6.50) by putting them in the special claypots in advance.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 22

She only starts cooking the dish when a customer orders, to keep it fresh.

I found this very smart as well, as it saved a lot of time since she was manning the stall alone.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 19

I noticed the owner was adding a variety of sauces into the claypot without any measurements. This can only be achieved with years of experience!

The concoction of sauces she adds is part of a secret recipe. However, Reiko was able to disclose that shao hsing hua tiao wine goes into it.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 7

Just before serving, Reiko drizzles sweet black sauce over the claypot rice, but apparently, traditional Malaysian claypot rice comes without it.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 9

Just mixing the ingredients together was already making my mouth water and the fragrance from the claypot dish filled the air.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 8

Right off the bat, I could see thick slices of lup cheong (Chinese sausage) in the claypot.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 10

They were sinfully oily, oozing juice and decadence with every bite.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 11

The chunks of chicken meat were amazing too.

They had a deep-brown hue which was proof that they had been marinated for a long time.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 12

Flavourful and juicy, they went very well with the umami rice.

I tried to ask about the ingredients in the marinade but the owner was totally tight-lipped because after all, the secret recipe belongs to her father.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 21

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice also uses fresh chickens which are delivered every two days. As such, the chicken meat was extremely fork-tender and absorbed all the flavours of the marinade.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 15

The rice was also perfectly soft and chewy.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 16

I could taste every grain, a mark of well-cooked and quality rice.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 14

Of course, the burnt rice bits at the bottom of the claypot were crackly and scrumptious too.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 13

I realised that compared to claypot rice elsewhere, the rice took longer to become charred. This is because the special claypot keeps the rice warm instead of cooking it further.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 17

Unlike most claypot rice stalls out there, Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice doesn’t provide any bowls or plates. As such, you’ll have to eat it straight from the claypot.

Reiko explained that this keeps the ingredients warm so that they’ll taste good throughout the meal.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 23

The next dish I had was the Claypot Chicken 瓦煲鸡 (S$6.50). I bet you’re wondering, aren’t the two dishes essentially the same, just that this comes without rice?

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 24

I thought the same, but Reiko explained that the recipe for this dish is different from for the claypot rice. Apparently, Reiko created the dish to go with beer.

Sesame oil, amongst many other sauces, goes into the dish, making it incredibly aromatic.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 30

The dish also contains three types of chilli, including dried red chilli.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 27

The other two are green chillis, one of which is actually grown by Reiko’s family back in their hometown.

So if you have a low spice tolerance like me, think twice before ordering!

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 26

As expected, the chicken was super tender and juicy, with a strong salty flavour which I absolutely loved.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 28

The sauce was to die for too. Give me a bowl of white rice and I reckon I can actually finish every last drop of it.

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice Clementi 20

Currently, most of Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice’s customers order through online delivery services. While there’re also regular customers who patronise the stall in person, business strangely hasn’t picked up much.

For the affordable prices and nostalgic flavours, Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice is definitely up there with the other big names. I’ll definitely drop by for their Claypot Chicken Rice if I’m in the area.

Expected Damage: S$5 – S$6.50 per pax

Price: $

Our Rating: 5 / 5

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice 永年瓦煲鸡饭

Block 325, Clementi Avenue 5, #01-129, Singapore 120325

Price
Our Rating 5/5

Yong Nian Claypot Chicken Rice 永年瓦煲鸡饭

Block 325, Clementi Avenue 5, #01-129, Singapore 120325

Operating Hours: 11am - 3pm & 5pm - 8.30pm (Daily)

Operating Hours: 11am - 3pm & 5pm - 8.30pm (Daily)

Get $10 off over 600 dining vouchers from ChopeDeals when you subscribe to our free mailing list!

* indicates required

Share Your Comments

$10 off promo code on dining vouchers

Get $10 off over 600 dining vouchers from ChopeDeals when you subscribe to our free mailing list!