Although chicken rice in the central province of Phu Yen is not as popular as its versions in Hoi An City and Quang Nam Province, the dish is worth a try because its flavor may be unforgettable for diners
Phu Yen chicken rice is quite similar in many ways to Hoi An chicken rice. They both have soft chicken flesh and yellow rice. However, what making Phu Yen chicken rice special are dipping sauce and pickled onions.
Dipping sauce served with the dish is sweet and sour fish sauce which may awake diners’ taste buds. The dipping sauce will be tastier with garlics from Phan Rang or Ly Son, two Vietnam’s locations well known as “Garlic Kingdom.”
Pickled onions are also an indispensable ingredient of the Phu Yen dish. These pickled onions are not only sour and too pungent but are crunchy and sweet. They help partly neutralize the chicken fat taste.
To have the tastiest Phu Yen chicken rice, rice must be soaked in water before being stir fried with minced garlic. The cook will add some chicken broth to create the light yellow for the rice. In addition, the flesh of pastured chicken will make the dish tastier as such flesh is not friable like that of industrial chicken.
The genuine Phu Yen-style chicken rice cannot be served without sliced cucumbers, herbs and green chilies.
Fortunately, you don’t have to travel more than 500 kilometers from HCMC to Phu Yen Province to taste this dish. Some restaurants in HCMC have it on the menus.
By Lam Nhu