Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice

1 August 2009

It was late in the morning on one hot Saturday when I went out of my apartment to try eating in Maxwell Road Food Center for the very first time. After a brief 15-minute walk, I found myself outside one of the most talked about hawker center here in Singapore.

the main entrance of Maxwell Food Center

the main entrance of Maxwell Food Center

I didn’t know what to eat at first, and then I remembered that there is this very famous chicken rice stall inside this said hawker center. My only problem was, I did not research firsthand to find out the name of that said stall.

Problem solved; I just went around and in as short as 2 minutes, I saw the stall that I was looking for: Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice. How did I find it? I just went around and looked for the stalls selling chicken rice, which had the most amount of foot traffic. I checked the posters in the stall and I was immediately able to confirm that this was the one I was looking for.

long line means good food!!

long line means good food!!

For info, Hainanese chicken rice is a Chinese dish informally known as the “national dish” of Singapore. It consists of boiled chicken meat that served at room temperature and eaten with oily tasty rice that has previously been cooked with herbs and chicken stock. The dish is generally served with three kinds of sauce: soy sauce, ginger sauce and chili sauce. I eat my chicken rice with a combination of soy sauce and chili sauce, 1/3 and 2/3 respectively.

I have noticed here in Singapore that the people do not mind queuing at all, if it is worth it they will really line up for it and will not mind waiting for a long time. Readers, please remember this if you happen to find yourself eating in a hawker center here in Singapore; if you have a hard time deciding what and where to eat, the safest best would be to follow the herd and line up at the stall with the longest queue. As for me, by following the herd, it took me around 30 minutes before I was finally able to sit down and have a taste of the food from one of the 15 hawker legends here in Singapore.

It turned out to be one of the best chicken rice I have ever tasted. The rice was done just right, not too soft nor too hard, not too oily and was very fragrant. The chicken meat was very tender and juicy. The chili sauce is quite different from the one I have tried before as it was spicier than average.

the unofficial national food of Singapore

the unofficial national food of Singapore

I was not disappointed at all as it lived up to its expectation but to come back for it again and wait for 30 minutes to get my food? Nah, I can let that pass. However, I would gladly bring any tourist friends of mine here to have a taste of what Anthony Bourdain described as a “chicken rice is (sic) so fragrant and delicious that it can be eaten on its own.” 

Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice

Maxwell Food Centre Stall 10
Operating Hours: 
11am to 8pm
Closed on Monday


20 Responses to “Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice”

  1. I never really liked chicken rice. Sumasakit ang tiyan ko pagkatapos kumain, I dunno why.

  2. Dea Says:

    This is one of the things I regret not doing when we went there. It was in my to-do list, mainly because of Anthony Bourdain, but we never got around to it, even if the venue of the concerts we went to was just nearby (DBS Auditorium). I don’t know when we’ll go back to Singapore, this year’s guitar festival is cancelled.

  3. Hello! Great site you have here! I’ve never been to Singapore, unfortunately, but if I do, I will definitely check out the chicken rice. I heard about it first from Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations” and it looked really delicious!

    Also, thanks for visiting my travel blog! If you’d like to trade links, let me know! 🙂

  4. Gaew Says:

    Thanks for this!! I saw this place on No Reservation but couldn’t find the info. on it on their website for some reason.

  5. PatShelby Says:

    Your site was extremely interesting, especially since I was searching for thoughts on this subject last Thursday. 🙂

  6. Donnieboy Says:

    Just wanted to drop you a line to say, I enjoy reading your site. I thought about starting a blog myself but don’t have the time.
    Oh well maybe one day…. 🙂

  7. HenleyL Says:

    Hey, I really enjoy your blog. I have a blog too in a totally unrelated field (Online Stock Trading) but I like to check in here on a regular basis, just to see what’s going on and it’s always interesting to say the least. It’s always entertaining what people have to say.

  8. […] wait was long, definitely much longer than what I endured when I tried eating Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice and IKEA Meatballs. I was getting a bit impatient but I could not bear leaving the line when we […]

  9. Gaylang Says:

    maxwell hawker center is closed on Mondays?? is this true? uhmm..why?

    • The whole Maxwell Hawker Center should not be closed on Mondays because it doesn’t make sense for it to do so on an economic point of view. Some shops may close though as they may observe 1 day of rest.

  10. […] wait was long, definitely much longer than what I endured when I tried eating Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice and IKEA Meatballs. I was getting a bit impatient but I could not bear leaving the line when we […]

  11. […] waiting was comparable to that time I tried eating Tian Tian Chicken Rice some weeks back. We ordered the 15-pcs Swedish Meatball (SGD 8.00) , 6-pcs Chicken Wings (SGD […]

  12. click Says:

    After I open up your Feed it seems to be a lot of garbage, is the issue on my part?

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