Wednesday, April 9, 2014

H is for Hyrax and Hainan Chicken Rice.

Before you read my H post, I need to tell you all that I will be slow visiting any of you today as I have doctors' appointments. Nothing serious, just check ups and things, but I will not be computing that's a dead cert.

Hyrax kept coming up in Matt’s crossword puzzles and although I was familiar with the word,  I wasHyrax not sure what exactly it was. Eventually I googled. Turns out it is the cutest little critter. According to Wikipedia, it is often thought of as being a rodent but is, in fact, more closely related to the elephant. Now there’s a surprise. Typically, they measure between 30 and 70 cm long and weigh between 2 and 5 kg. If you check Wikipedia it gives the history of it’s development. There are, apparently several types of Hyrax scattered around including tree hyraxes. They generally inhabit rocky areas in sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East. There is an interesting comparison with them and elephants, dugongs and manatees. It is thought that the Hyrax may have evolved from an aquatic creature.

By the way, I just wanted to say, if I don't get to your blog today, we have doctor's appointments all day. I will try and get there ASAP.

This sounds a very easy meal and also tasty.

Hainan Chicken Rice

By Heydarl on April 09, 2007

Photo by Leggy Peggy
Servings: 4

"A simple meal that can be made a day ahead and refrigerated. Retain the stock in a separate, covered container. ComplPhotoete the dish just before serving. From Family Circle Chinese and Asian Cookbook"


    • 1 1/2 kg whole chickens
    • 1 sprig celery leaves
    • 3 peppercorns
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 2 spring onions, roughly chopped
    • 3 tablespoons peanut oil
    • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
    • 1 tablespoon ginger, finely grated
    • 2 teaspoons garlic, finely grated
    • 1 large onion, finely sliced
    • 2 cups short-grain rice

    Dipping Sauces

    • 1 tablespoon ginger, finely sliced
    • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
    • 1 red chilli, chopped or 1 teaspoon sambal oelek


    • 1/2 cup Chinese cabbage, finely shredded
    • 2 tablespoons fresh coriander, chopped


  1. Wash chicken under cold water. Place in a large pan with the celery leaves, peppercorns, salt and spring onion, cover with water. Cover the pan, bring to the boil, simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and leave, covered, for 45 minutes.
  2. Heat the oils in a pan with a well fitting lid. Add ginger, garlic and onion and cook until soft and golden. Set aside 1 tablespoon of the oil to use for a Dipping Sauce.
  3. Add rice to pan and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, Add 3 cups of stock from the pan in which the chicken was cooked. Bring to the boil. Simmer until holes appear in the rice.
  4. Cover pan tightly and reduce heat to very low. Cook for 15 minutes. Remove lid; fluff up the rice with a fork.
  5. While rice is cooking, remove the chicken from the pan, retaining the stock for the Soup. Joint Western-style or chop Chinese-style. Arrange pieces on a serving platter; keep warm.
  6. To make Dipping Sauces: Use reserved tablespoon of cooking oils and combine with grated ginger. For the second sauce, combine soy sauce and chili.
  7. To make Soup: The remaining stock may be served alongside the rice dish as a soup. Strain it, bring to the boil and add the Chinese cabbage. Pour into a bowl; sprinkle with coriander.
  8. Serve chicken, rice and Dipping Sauces with the bowl of hot chicken broth on the side.
Have a great day
Jo (2)


  1. Always looking for new recipes. Thanks for sharing this one! *another a to z blogger

    1. Your welcome and thanks for dropping by.

  2. That Hyrax is so CUTE!!!!!!!! Have you ever seen a pic of a Quokka? Go look that up when you get a chance. The recipe sounds delish, I might have to make it sometime!

    1. It is cute isn't it. I think I had seen pix before from a friend in Oz.

      Me too, fair amount of prep but sounds good.

  3. Fascinating post, Jo. I'm really enjoying your blog. Hyrax is new to me!

  4. this sounds delicious and something my husband would like. I will try it!

  5. Okay, animals and recipes! What a mix. I've never heard of this little creature but you're right, he is cute! Happy A to Z...

  6. Matt doe cross word puzzles? Awesome. I do the one in USA Today every morning. (On my iPad of course.)

    1. Only Matt can't use a computer, I print puzzles off for him.

  7. Who can resist a blog with the word chocolate in the title? Not me! I was surprised to learn that little critter was closer to an elephant than a rodent. Very surprised. Who'd a thought...
    Anyway, thanks for the recipe, glad to meet and follow you, and don't worry about responding fast. I had appointments earlier this week, and more tomorrow, so I know what that's like. I'll be back when I get time, and don't worry if you run out of time.

    1. Thanks Debi. It is incredible that it isn't a rodent isn't it?

      The docs took less time than usual I'm glad to say so the rest of the day is virtually my own.

  8. Hope the doctor's visit went well. The Hyrax sounds like it was made for a Dr. Seuss book..

    1. Yup it did thanks. Had one in the morning, another in the afternoon.

      Yes, I can see the Hyrax as a star for Dr. Seuss.

  9. I love that word "critter" which we don't really use in Aussieland. I might start using it! I'd like one of those little critters as a pet. Looks a bit like my Chihuahua and I'm sure they'd be friends :)

    1. I guess it's a word I picked up once I emigrated. I love it. Not sure if your Chihuahua would get on with a Hyrax

  10. Such a cute little thing, does it scare the elephant like the mouse? Sorry your tied up with medical appointments again, such a drain on time, but necessary to keep all things well!

    1. I wonder if that's true? As you say, a drain on time but a necessity.

  11. Hi Jo - we used to see Hyrax fairly often in southern Africa .. especially on Table Mountain at Cape Town .. they are funny little creatures ...

    Hope those appointments went through all right .. cheers Hilary

    1. How lovely. I hardly knew what they were. Were they as cute as they look.

      Yup, all was fine thanks.