There is fowl play in the chicken-themed snacks and dishes bakeries and restaurants are coming up with for the Year of the Rooster
It is three weeks to the Year of the Rooster, so expect restaurants and bakeries to pull out all the stops with innovative Chinese New Year goodies - chicken-themed, of course.
Bakery chain PrimaDeli has launched Hainanese chicken rice cookies, which are made with its sister brand Prima Taste's Hainanese Chicken Rice Fragrance Oil and Chicken Rice Ginger Sauce.
HarriAnns - which specialises in Nonya kueh and traditional Chinese New Year snacks - offers crispy chicken floss samosas with a hint of spice, while bakery Baker's Well has chicken floss love letters.
And for a snack you can cluck over, check out The Fullerton Hotel's pistachio cookies, which are shaped like adorable chicks, as well as the Happy Chick buns from D'Bun.
Restaurants are, of course, winging their way in on the trend as well, preparing chicken dishes with different varieties of the bird to stand out from the competition.
Bib Gourmand-rated Chinese restaurant Peony Jade - which has outlets at Keppel Club and Clarke Quay - is using corn-fed chicken in its Baked Fortune Chicken dish.
Its executive chef, Rick Liew, says corn-fed chicken meat is "juicier, sweeter and more tender" than normal chickens.
He adds: "Corn-fed chicken meat does not get mushy because it has no added hormones and antibiotics."
Meanwhile, The Westin Singapore is using Sakura chicken in its Steamed Sakura Chicken In Lotus Leaf. This chicken is used for its tender and juicy meat, says executive sous chef Yeo Eng Woon.
Ingredients such as truffle and black fungus are added to the stuffing.
The Sunday Times rounds up the most interesting chicken-themed snacks and dishes.
STEAMED SAKURA CHICKEN IN LOTUS LEAF
What: The chicken is deep-fried, then wrapped in lotus leaf and steamed for two hours. The stuffing contains truffle, stir-fried black fungus, Chinese dried mushrooms, fresh mushrooms and bamboo shoots. It costs $98 for eight to 10 people.
Where: Daily Treats, Level 1 The Westin Singapore, Asia Square Tower 2, 12 Marina View
When: Jan 14 to Feb 11, order three days in advance, no collection on Jan 28 and 29
Info: E-mail restaurant. firstname.lastname@example.org
YUZU MARMITE CHICKEN
What: Gao Peng Cuisine created this dish specially for Chinese New Year. Deep-fried chicken thigh meat is stir-fried in a yuzu and Marmite sauce. It is topped with pomelo and pickled green mango for a mix of tangy, sweet and savoury flavours.
The dish is available for takeaway and is part of dine-in menus priced from $118++ (for two people).
Where: Gao Peng Cuisine, 02-12 White Sands Shopping Mall, 1 Pasir Ris Central 3
When: 11am to 10pm daily, except Jan 28 and 29
Info: Call 6385-4901 or go to www.facebook.com/gaopengcuisine
STEAMED FARM CHICKEN
What: For a simple, fuss-free dish, go for Hai Tien Lo's steamed farm chicken ($48+), which is available in the restaurant's dine-in set menus as well as for takeaway. Pair the tender meat with the housemade minced ginger sauce, which is a blend of spring onions, ginger and spices. If you need more sauce, a bottle of it goes for $18.80+.
Where: Hai Tien Lo, Pan Pacific Singapore, 7 Raffles Boulevard
When: Tomorrow to Feb 11, 11.30am to 9pm daily, collection on Jan 27 by 3pm, order three days in advance
Info: Order online at pacificmarketplace.sg
"FA CAI" EIGHT TREASURES CHICKEN
What: York Hotel's signature chicken dish ($62++ for dine-in, $62+ for takeaway) is prepared with a whole chicken and includes ingredients such as fa cai (black moss), lotus seeds, black mushrooms, straw mushrooms, chestnuts, ginkgo nuts and bamboo shoots.
The chicken is blanched in hot oil before it is placed with the other ingredients in a claypot and steamed for about two hours.
Where: White Rose Cafe, York Hotel, 21 Mount Elizabeth
When: For dine-in: 6am to 11pm daily, 6.30 to 10pm (Jan 27); for collection: Jan 20 to Feb 11, 11am to 8pm, collection on Jan 27 by 5.30pm, order a day in advance
Info: Call 6737-0511 or e-mail email@example.com
BRAISED WHOLE CHICKEN WITH SEA TREASURES IN CLAYPOT
What: Chinese restaurant Min Jiang at Goodwood Park Hotel features a whole braised chicken with sea treasures in claypot ($268++ for six people, $286.75 nett for takeaway), where a whole spring chicken is flash-fried, then braised for an hour.
Australian 10-head abalones, dried oysters, Chinese mushrooms, dried scallops, white radish, fa cai (black moss) as well as housemade shrimp and minced pork balls are cooked separately.
All the ingredients are then steamed together for 45 minutes before serving.
Its sister restaurant Min Jiang at One-North offers a nourishing double-boiled wild chicken consomme with abalone, fish maw and wonton in claypot ($228++ for six people, $243.95 nett for takeaway). The soup is simmered for 41/2 hours, with fish maw and prawn wontons cooked separately to ensure they have a firm texture.
Where: Min Jiang at Goodwood Park Hotel, 22 Scotts Road; and Min Jiang at One-North, 5 Rochester Park
When: Tuesday to Feb 11, order five days in advance, last date of order on Feb 6, noon
Info: For Min Jiang at Goodwood Park Hotel: call 6730-1704 or e-mail min_jiang@goodwood park hotel.com; for Min Jiang at One-North: call 6774-0122 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
BAKED FORTUNE CHICKEN
What: A corn-fed chicken is baked for six to eight hours and it takes another hour for the chefs to prepare and mould the salt crust into the shape of the chicken.
It comes with eight chocolate eggs to end the meal on a sweet note. It is priced at $188.88, for up to 10 people, and is available for dine-in and takeaway.
Where: Peony Jade at Keppel Club, Bukit Chermin Road; and 02-02, Block 3A Clarke Quay
When: Till Feb 28, 11am to 2.30pm (weekdays), 10am to 3pm (weekends), 6 to 11pm daily
Info: Call 6276-9138 (Keppel Club) or 6338-0305 (Clarke Quay)
CHICKEN-SHAPED PISTACHIO COOKIES
What: These rooster-inspired cookies ($28 for a box of nine) are made with a filling of pistachio mixed with lotus seed paste.
Other new highlights include baked banana gold ingot cookies ($28 for a box of nine) and Prosperity pineapple tarts ($30 for a box of nine), which are shaped like Chinese chess pieces.
Where: The Fullerton Cake Boutique, Lobby Level, The Fullerton Hotel Singapore, 1 Fullerton Square
When: Till Feb 11, 10am to 8pm daily
Info: Call 6877-8943/8178, e-mail email@example.com or order online at shop.fullertonhotel.com
CHICKEN FLOSS LOVE LETTERS
What: Why eat plain love letters when you can have them stuffed with chicken floss? Baker's Well's chicken floss love letters contain coarsely shredded floss for a stronger flavour and more bite. A tin costs $30. The bakery also sells chicken floss triangle rolls ($25).
Where: Baker's Well, 35 East Coast Road, and booths at B2 Takashimaya Square and Level 1 Tampines Mall
When: 8am to 9pm daily (East Coast outlet)
Info: Call 9731-2644 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
HAINANESE CHICKEN RICE COOKIES
What: Last year, PrimaDeli's laksa cookies turned out to be popular, so this year, the home-grown bakery chain introduces a Hainanese Chicken Rice Cookie ($19.80) for the Year of the Rooster.
The cookies are flavoured with Prima Taste products such as its Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste, Hainanese Chicken Rice Fragrance Oil and Chicken Rice Ginger Sauce.
Where: All PrimaDeli outlets including Jurong Point, Punggol Plaza, Causeway Point and City Square Mall
When: Till Jan 27 or while stocks last
Info: Call 6276-3333 or go to www.primadeli.com
What: If you are looking for something cute for the children or for your dessert table, check out D'Bun's Happy Chick Bao ($26.80 for a box of 15 pieces) with a creamy lotus seed paste filling; and Golden Chicks ($26.80), signature pineapple tarts shaped like chicks.
Where: D'Bun outlets at 358 Joo Chiat Road and B1-20 Liang Court; and its booth at B2 Takashimaya Square
When: Till Jan 26 or while stocks last
Info: Call 6345-8220 (Joo Chiat) or 6837-0778 (Liang Court) or go to www.dbun.com.sg
SPICY CHICKEN FLOSS COOKIES
What: New on the menu for this Chinese New Year is Garden Pastry & Cake's spicy chicken floss cookies ($20.80).
The cookies are not too spicy and are fragrant and crisp as they are rolled in cornflake bits.
Where: Garden Pastry & Cake at 01-505, Block 95 Aljunied Crescent; and booths including B2 Takashimaya Square; Level 1 Atrium, VivoCity; and Raffles Place MRT station
When: Till Jan 27 (Aljunied outlet), order three days in advance
Info: Call 6745-5706/9296-1395 or e-mail email@example.com
CHICKEN FLOSS SAMOSAS
What: These crispy, bite-sized samosas ($19.90) from HarriAnns are very thin filo pastry filled with mildly spicy chicken floss.
Where: All HarriAnns outlets including B1-03/04 Ocean Financial Centre, 10 Collyer Quay; 01-01A Bugis Junction Towers, 230 Victoria Street; 02-25 Tiong Bahru Food Centre, Block 30 Seng Poh Road; and 01-05/07, 1007 Aljunied Avenue 4; and its booth at B2 Takashimaya Square
When: Till Feb 26, various opening hours
Info: Call 6742-0608 or go to www.harrianns.com
•All Chinese New Year booths run until Jan 26.
This article was first published on Jan 8, 2016.
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