Chicken Kiev

Chicken Kiev

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery
Serves
2

Chicken Kiev at its finest is simply a boned and flattened chicken breast wrapped around chilled butter lightly flavoured with chives. It is then dipped in egg and breadcrumbs and fried. Pierced with a fork, the chicken releases a jet of golden butter (unwary diners should be warned!) and the combination of liquid butter and juicy chicken is perfection, with no further dressing-up needed. If you order chicken Kiev and find it flavoured with garlic, or with mushrooms added to the filling, it is a chef’s unnecessary variation. Follow the recipe below, and you will be making it as it was created in Kiev in Ukraine, and is still served there today.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1 whole chicken breast, cut from a large chicken, with wing attached
30g butter
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chives, finely snipped
plain flour, for coating
1 egg, lightly beaten
80g fresh white breadcrumbs, rubbed through a sieve
oil, for deep-frying

Method

  1. Cut chicken breast in half. With a sharp, pointed knife remove bones from breast, leaving wing joints (including bones) attached. Cut wings off at first joint and scrape meat off bone so it is clean and attached to breast. Peel away skin.
  2. Place the 2 pieces of breast between 2 sheets of baking paper or plastic wrap and pound until thin with a mallet or the end of an empty wine bottle. Cut butter into 2 pieces and roll each into a cork shape. Chill. Place a roll of butter at base of each chicken breast, diagonally in line with wing bone. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and chives.
  3. Fold chicken flesh over butter, then roll up towards bone, folding sides in as you go to enclose butter completely inside chicken. The flesh will adhere without skewers. Coat each breast lightly with flour, dip in egg and roll in breadcrumbs. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  4. Heat oil in large saucepan, using enough to cover chicken breasts. To test if oil is hot enough, drop a cube of bread into it. The bread should rise to the surface immediately. Gently lower chicken into oil and fry for 4½–5 minutes or until golden brown. (This is the only tricky part to chicken Kiev. The oil must be hot enough to brown chicken breast, but not colour it too much before chicken is cooked through.) If chicken starts to brown too quickly during this time, lower the heat. Remove from oil, drain on paper towels and serve immediately, with warm straw potatoes (the packaged variety will do).

Note

  • If you are buying chicken breasts already cut and boned, the wing joint may be removed. If this is so, proceed with the recipe ignoring the missing wing joint.
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