I never understood the hype for chicken rice and have always found them average. “Aiya, you never eat good chicken rice before one la,” I hear you typing out. You know what, that might be true. Enter Edmond Chicken Rice, located at 48A Tanglin Halt Road. This is apparently one of the best and most affordable halal chicken rice stalls out there.
Edmond Chicken Rice started out when 16-years-old Edmond started skipping class to work with a chicken rice uncle under his block. He continued his chicken rice journey by working at the former food court, Banquet. At the age of 26, he decided to open his first stall between 2009 and 2010.
Do note that Edmond Chicken Rice doesn’t have a fixed opening schedule. It’s best to check out their Facebook page before heading down.
What I tried at Edmond Chicken Rice
If you’ve been to any chicken rice stall in your life, then the menu at Edmond Chicken Rice should be a familiar sight. You have your Chicken Rice (S$4) and Chicken Rice Set (S$5.50), both available in Roast or Steam chicken, though they were out of steamed chicken. There were also the expected Chicken Noodles (S$4) and Chicken Porridge (S$4). I opted for the Chicken Rice and Chicken Noodles.
My order of Chicken Rice came with a bowl of soup and chilli sauce on the side. I felt that it had significantly more meat than what I am used to seeing from other chicken rice stalls. The entire dish was finished with a splash of light soy sauce.
My first bite left me wanting. Sure, the rice was fluffy and slightly overcooked like how it’s supposed to be, but I just didn’t get enough flavour from it. There wasn’t any expected aroma from the ginger and garlic on the rice, instead, it had a slightly sweet flavour because of the light soya sauce.
The chicken, despite being reasonably tender, too was crying out for flavour. There just wasn’t an edge to it. It was like drinking diet soda—it may look and feel right but you know damn well something is lacking.
My favourite part of a roasted chicken, its shiny skin, was cast the same fate as its fleshy counterpart. The strong chicken and maltose-infused flavours were gone.
Despite all of its shortcomings, I knew the dish still had a card left to play—its soup. Just slather them over the rice and chicken and it would ace the dish. The card turned out to be a deuce as it too fell short. It had a very generic chicken stock flavour despite the addition of dried shallots and chopped spring onions.
I was so desperate for flavours that I even tried their chilli sauce, something that I’d never done before. It was surprisingly tangy with a good amount of spiciness, and though I could only muster a bite of it, this was perfect for those who were accustomed to eating it with chilli.
I actually enjoy eating chicken noodles and it was always my dish of choice at a chicken rice stall. Because of that, I left my let-down of a meal behind and proceeded with a renewed sense of hope.
And as predicted, it didn’t disappoint. The noodles were cooked with just the right amount of springiness with every bite. The chilli paste used was thick, requiring a couple of tosses from the bundle of noodles to get them all smeared. Once you get that out of the way, you’ll be treated with a strong spicy flavour best described by the words “power sia”.
Though it should really be called wanton noodles rather than chicken noodles, I thought the use of wanton was a good idea, especially considering how the chicken tasted. It had minced chicken inside that was lightly seasoned with white pepper and salt.
If I was being nitpicky, I would have liked an option to have your wanton fried as the crispy skin would do so much as an added texture, but hey, you get 6 pieces of them and they taste better than the chicken slices.
This is really a tale of 2 dishes. While the chicken rice was nothing to write home about (or even write), the chicken noodles really made my lunch with its addicting chilli paste and satisfying wantons. According to most reviews online, I’d like to think that the lapse of the chicken rice was purely coincidental but I can only review what I was served.
Having said that, you can easily get both dishes at nearly all chicken rice stalls, making Edmond Chicken Rice difficult to recommend especially if you don’t stay around the vicinity. I’d only consider coming back if I’m ever nearby and only for the Chicken Noodles.
Expected damage: S$4 – S$8 per pax
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