Food school: From Kiev with chicken

Home is where we put down the pan.

Chicken Kiev is considered one of the national dishes of Ukraine. In normal times, of course, it can be found all over the capital. But just as béarnaise was never born in Béarn, or baked in Alaska never saw a snowflake in the Arctic, this chicken dish never hatched in Kyiv.

It has its roots in 18th-century Paris, where the Francophile Russian aristocracy sent its young people on educational trips, tailors to learn fashion and chefs to develop gastronomy. At that time, the Tsarist state may seem like a child after a box of cakes in terms of belonging to Central Europe.

  • Read Henrik J. Henriksen’s recipes from the case below.

But why Kiev? Because the city was closer to Central Europe than the rest of the Tsarist Empire? Because this fertile land has a richer food culture than most other areas of the Russian Empire? Or because the chicken dish is covered in breadcrumbs? Ukraine has one of the richest grain and bread cultures in the world, and there is always a recipe for stale bread.

Shouldn’t Ukraine celebrate its fried chicken because it was originally born in Paris? Or should we accept that people decide their own destiny and that our home is where we put the pan down?


Chicken à la Kyiv

Suitable for: 4 people.
Time: approx. 2 hours.

4 chicken breasts (preferably with wings)
250 g of butter
3 cloves of garlic
1-2 tablespoons of pickled tarragon
3 tbsp chopped herbs (parsley, chives)
1/2 tsp. fenugreek (can be omitted)
About. 150 g herb butter (((((see next page))))), see below
50 g wheat flour
2 eggs
200 g breadcrumbs/grilling flour/panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) for frying)
1 egg
1 liter of neutral oil

Prepare the butter first: Put the hardened butter in a food processor with the garlic, pickled tarragon, parsley, chives, dill or chives – preferably all together. As well as fenugreek, if you will. It’s not a very common ingredient here, but it has a wonderful flavor when heated with butter and goes really well with tarragon. Beat the butter until it is green and the herbs are finely chopped. Place it on parchment paper and roll it into a sausage about the thickness of your thumb. Put the roll in the fridge.

Chicken: It is best to preserve the inner wing bone. But it’s a lot of work and it makes it harder to roll the chest after. I’m not sure if it’s worth it. Skin the breast, clean (or cut off) the wing bone and scrape it clean. Cut a horizontal incision in the chest outwards from the center, only 1 cm, so that you can unscrew it a little. With the back of a steak or heavy knife, chop the brisket flat and large.

Place a piece of butter sausage (approx. 40–50 g) in each breast. Roll the breast meat tightly around and break the “point”. Wrap each breast tightly in plastic wrap. Leave them in the freezer for approx. 1 hour until they are half frozen.

Now the rolls need to be breaded.

Remove the plastic and coat the chicken rolls thoroughly with flour, then egg, and finally breadcrumbs. Firmly press the crumb around so that it covers completely. Place the rolls back in the freezer. Set the oven to 230°C, preferably hot air. Heat a deep pan with oil for approx. 165 °C. (Put a wooden spoon in the pot. There should be small bubbles.) Add the rolls and cook for approx. 2 minutes. Carefully turn them every half minute so they cook evenly. Bake them in the oven until golden, approx. 12-15 minutes. Serve hot with half a lemon.


Breadcrumbs: Breaded foods are no better than the bread they are rolled in. Of course, the best thing is to cut off the crust on a good, light sourdough bread and grate it in an almond grinder or run it in the oven. food processor.

Panko: The Japanese variety doesn’t have much flavor, but it has a wonderful crunch. You can too double panel: First fold in the flour, then in the egg, and then in the fine breadcrumbs. Then again in the egg and then in a slightly coarser crumb.

Frying control

It can be difficult to tell whether a rolled chicken breast is fully cooked or not. You don’t want to poke holes so that all the flavored butter runs out, and you don’t want to eat raw chicken either. You can carefully insert the roasting thermometer 1-2 cm into the wing, where the meat is still compact. The brisket is cooked at around 70°C. If yes, enter above. If you’re not lucky, you’ll still run out of a little aromatic fat.

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