Huen Kee in Pudu, located next to a very busy traffic intersection (and with flyovers passing close to it) holds the enviable reputation of serving the best Cantonese-style claypot chicken rice (“nga po kai fun”) in Kuala Lumpur. It was started back in 1986 by the feisty Mdm Heum Mei Lan, 75.
Cooked over charcoal-fired stoves, Mdm Heum marinades her chicken pieces in her “secret sauce” overnight (12 hours at least). Upon order, she cooks her claypot rice from scratch - putting uncooked rice grains, marinated chicken pieces, Chinese waxed sausages and plain water into the claypots before bringing them to boil over the furnace-like heat of the charcoal-fired stoves.
- The cooked chicken rice will be topped with finely-chopped scallions, and a tiny metallic decanter containing a small sliver of salted threadfin ("ikan kurau) in oil. Mince the salt fish with the oil and pour the concoction onto the rice, and stir to mix everything. The salted fish really added an extra taste dimension to the dish.
- A good accompaniment to the claypot chicken rice is - the pig’s stomach and chicken feet soup. It’s a clear, very peppery soup. Not really to my liking, but KL-lites simply love this soup - I noticed other claypot chicken rice vendors also offer the same soup, so it must be de rigeur as a side-dish.
- Stir-fried Romaine lettuce (yau mak) was very tasty here, with the addition of “fu yue” (Cantonese fermented beancurd), garlic and red chillis.
- We also ordered a plate of steamed soft tofu, drizzled with oyster sauce & vegetable oil, and topped with crisp-fried dried shrimps, shallots and chopped green scallions. My fave dish here, although everything else are just as good.
A definite must-visit for any foodie visitor to Kuala Lumpur.
Heun Kee Claypot Chicken Rice (禤记瓦煲鸡饭)
59, Jalan Yew, Pudu
55100 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-9200 1603
Opening hours: 11.00am-9.30pm (closed on 1st & 3rd Thursday of the month).