Bread & Beast opened in Hong Kong two years ago; it was started by four friends who had spent time in the US and Canada and who felt Hong Kong lacked a decent sandwich shop.
Bread & Beast recently took up its first overseas residency, moving into Melbourne’s new rotating hawker hall, HWKR, in February.
If you can’t get there, here’s a piece of Bread & Beast you can have at home.
The inspiration for this sandwich came from co-founder Chris Cheung’s favourite Hainanese chicken dish – a version offered at a now-closed restaurant in Sydney. Tender chicken; ginger and scallion; thick, sweet soy sauces – the Hainan Rooster pays homage to that trio.
The Hainan Rooster
1 brioche bun
1 chicken thigh
Pinch of salt
Chili, ginger, scallion mayo
6 Thai red chilis
1/2 stalk of spring onion
3 garlic cloves
3 inches ginger
Juice of 1 lime
3tbsp chicken broth
1tsp rice vinegar
1/2tsp sesame oil
1 egg yolk
1 Japanese cucumber
2tbsp white vinegar
Pinch of salt
Some rice crackers, crumbled (available at your local Asian grocer)
Cure chicken thigh with rock salt for half an hour, rinse and dry with kitchen towel. Roll up the thigh in plastic wrap. Boil a pot of water and submerge wrapped thigh in water.
Bring water back to boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Put lid on, switch off gas and let it poach in water bath for about 30 mins. Slice into 1-inch (2.5cm) pieces.
For the chilli, ginger, scallion mayo, blend all ingredients in a food processor except the oil. Then add oil slowly to make a chili, ginger, scallion mayo until it has a silky-thick consistency.
To pickle the cucumber, shred the entire cucumber and sprinkle a pinch of salt on it. Leave the salt on the cucumber for 20 minutes to remove water content. Then marinate cucumber in vinegar and sugar for 1 hour.
Cut the bun in half and toast in the oven.
To assemble the sandwich, place the chicken on the bottom bun, drizzle mayo over it, and layer pickled cucumber on top. To add crunch, sprinkle crumbled rice pops/crackers on top of filling.