~ Chinese Fragrant Rice aka Yao May Fun ~
In Cantonese, “Yao May Fun” literally means “Rice with Fragrant”. Chinese Fragrant Rice is an old school simple rice dish cooked with a few typical ingredients, namely chicken, mushrooms, Chinese sausages and dried shrimps. By the smell of it, one can tell that this rice dish is being cooked in the kitchen as the fragrant gets spread to the entire home. Some claims that the whole village can smell this rice dish when someone is cooking it.
The fragrant alone draws appetite and by smelling it, the hungry tummies will feel hungrier. Every spoonful of this savoury rice dish scooped into the mouth is so flavourful, it gives an “umph” feeling, aka feeling good. The more you eat, the hungrier you become (at least for my hubby and me!). To say that we will usually have a second helping or another bowl is an understatement. We get hooked up and keep scooping for more. This simple looking rice dish may appear unappealing and bland. Trust me, it does not justify how good it really taste. So, do not judge a book by its cover.
Chinese Fragrant Rice is usually cooked with starchy white rice for a good absorption of all the great flavours from the ingredients. However, for a healthier version, I have used a non-typical mix of basmati rice, which has a lower Glycemic Index with some glutinous rice in this recipe. The sticky nature of the glutinous rice is complimenting well with the basmati rice. This makes the “mouth feel” especially great without tolerating the flavour absorption in this rice dish.
As my little girl is allergic to shrimps and my hubby is not a fan of Chinese sausages, I have omitted these 2 ingredients. I replaced them with dried silver baits and Chinese dried oyster with more of garlic and shallots to compensate for the fragrant effect. The dried oyster is a great replacement as it does not take away the authenticity of a Chinese rice dish. It tasted really good despite the typical ingredients replaced.
In the process of cooking Chinese Fragrant Rice with an AMC system, I have stir fried the ingredients and cooked the rice with meat in one same 24cm 5.0 liter Pot unit. The combination of a 24cm AMC Secuquick Softline lid unit cooked fully automatically after the stir fried step. It took 2 minutes to cook from the boiling point. This eliminated the need for a transfer of the stir fried ingredients into another pot or rice cooker, shall a rice cooker is used. Cook up a waterless vegetable dish and a wholesome meal is good to go. For waterless vegetable ideas, visit Optimising Nutrients with Waterless Vegetables.
Chinese Fragrant Rice Recipe (Serves 4) :
- 300 grams Basmati Rice
- 100 grams Glutinous Rice
- 3 Chicken Breasts, approximately 300 grams (sliced)
- 4 tablespoons Silver Baits (cleaned)
- 12 pieces Chinese Black Mushrooms (sliced/cut into thin strips)
- 8 large size Dried Oyster (cut into 3 to 4 pieces each)
- 2 tablespoons Cooking Oil
- 4 cloves Garlic (thinly sliced)
- 4 Shallots (thinly sliced)
- 2 tablespoon Oyster Sauce
- 2 tablespoon Soy Sauce
- 1 tablespoon Sesame Oil
- 1 teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1 teaspoon Brown Sugar
- 1 tablespoon Corn Starch
- 400ml Water
- 1 stalk Spring Onions, chopped (garnishing)
AMC Healthy Cooking Method :
- Marinate chicken slices with a tablespoon of oyster sauce, a tablespoon of soy sauce, sesame oil, black pepper, brown sugar, and corn starch for 30 minutes. In a bowl, mix and dilute the remaining oyster sauce and soy sauce with water.
- Preheat AMC 24cm 5.0 liter Pot unit with Navigenio heat level “4” to 50°C or “Meat Window”. Use Audiotherm as an indicator by turning it on, place on lid knob, indicating 50°C or “Meat Window”.
- When Audiotherm beeps, turn off both Navigenio & Audiotherm. Remove lid, add cooking oil, shallots, garlic, dried silver baits, mushrooms, dried oyster and gently stir fry. Add all rice and stir well. Flatten the rice with a spatula or a spoon.
- Arrange marinated chicken slices on top of the rice.
- Pour in the diluted sauce with water prepared in step 1 above. Cover the pot with AMC 24cm Secuquick Softline unit. Switch on Navigenio to automatic “A”. Turn on Audiotherm, place on knob, indicating “Turbo” and set to cook for 2 minutes.
- As Audiotherm beeps, turn off both Navigenio & Audiotherm. When pot depressurised, remove lid, garnish with spring onion and serve warm.
- Chicken slices will become extra tender when the above method is used. If you prefer tougher texture, eliminate step 4 in the method. Add the uncooked chicken to the pot after the rice is cooked instead. Take on an additional step in Step 6 above by covering the pot with a normal lid and turn on the Navigenio on heat level “2” for 6 minutes to cook up the chicken slices. They should cook just nice, smooth and soft when ready.
- I enjoy peeking into the pot when the chicken slices are being cooked on the cooked rice. Hence, I used the limited edition transparent Blue Glass Lid to cover the pot.