Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Beggar's Chicken Recipe

Yesterday, I posted about our Chinese dinner.  One of the recipes that most liked was Beggar's Chicken -- which came from the International Cookbook for Kids. I think Nate appreciated the story behind the recipe more than anything, but he also enjoyed the finished product.

The legend is that a beggar stole a chicken from a farmer. The beggar built a fire and began to roast the chicken, but quickly heard the farmer coming on his horse.  So, he pulled the chicken off the fire, wrapped it in lotus leaves and buried it.  The farmer couldn't find his chicken, so he rode away.  The beggar dug up the chicken and found that the mud had created a shell around the hot chicken and cooked it perfectly.

  • 4 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (I used coconut milk)
  • 3 T canola oil
  • extra flour for kneading
  • 6 medium sized chicken breasts
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped bamboo shoots
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 T hoisin sauce
  1. Place flour in large bowl.  Combine milk & 1 T of oil, pour into flour and mix well into a soft dough. ( I needed to add about 1/2 cup more flour)
  2. Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead until it is smooth.
  3. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, place in bowl, cover with towel and let rest for 30 - 40 minutes
  4. Heat a wok on medium-high heat.  Add 1 T oil and heat for a few more seconds
  5. Add ground pork and cook until browned (4 - 6 minutes)
  6. Remove pork and add remaining 1T oil.  Add onions, celery & bamboo shoots.  Stir-fry for 2 minutes.
  7. Return pork to pan and add salt and hoisin sauce.  Cook for another minute or 2, making sure all is well combined.
  8. Put stuffing in a bowl and cool completely.  Refrigerate until ready to use (this is the stuffing to put on top of the chicken.
  9. Preheat oven to 375
  10. Unwrap the dough and divide into 6 equal pieces.  Roll out each piece to about 6 inches wide.
  11. Lay 1 chicken breast in center of dough.  Top with 2 T pork stuffing.  Gently fold dough over the chicken and seal edges.
  12. Place chicken in greased baking pan.
  13. Repeat for all chicken breasts.
  14. Bake for 40 - 50 minutes.  
  15. Serve hot.
I don't have a picture of the final product, but it was a pretty dish.  It could be cut up with knife and fork, or even eaten out of hand.

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