Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Chicken Kiev – A High Degree of Difficulty Always Scores Extra Points

Unlike virtually every other recipe featured here, I’m not going to say this chicken Kiev is “easy to make.” It’s really not. You could follow this exactly as shown, and still have undercooked meat, or leaking butter, or any number of other tragedies. So, why try?

Because, if and when you pull this off, you’ll be enjoying one of the greatest chicken experiences of your life. It’s also one of the greatest garlic experiences of your life, as well as one of the greatest butter experiences of your life.

What makes this so challenging is that you can’t really cut, or poke into the Kiev to check for doneness. That would release the garlic-parsley butter prematurely, and be anticlimactic, to say the least. So, we go blindly by time. There are also variables like breast size, freezer temps/time, and oven crowding to deal with. 

However, if you use 8-oz breasts, and freeze exactly as shown here, then after a 2 to 3 minute deep-frying, these should take about 15-17 minutes to bake. The good news is that you have a few minutes after that before the meat gets noticeably drier, so you can give it a little extra time if it seems like it needs it.

One rule great of thumb is to listen for the butter. These are generally done when the garlic butter inside is hot enough to be forced out through the seams on the bottom, and when that happens you’ll hear a sizzle, and maybe see some butter leaking on to your pan. This is usually time to pull them out, and let them rest five minutes.

If you’re cooking more than four of these, make sure they are well spaced, and give them a few extra minutes. If I do these for a larger group, I always do a few extra, so I can cut into one and double-check. Don’t worry, it will be our secret.

Anyway, if you’re feeling brave, and want to enjoy something named after a place sort of near where they are holding the Winter Olympics, then I hope you give this amazing chicken Kiev recipe a try soon. Enjoy!


For 4 portions chicken Kiev:

For the butter:
2 cloves garlic, finely crushed
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tbsp chopped Italian parsley (you can also add tarragon and/or chives)
pinch of salt

4 large (8-oz) boneless skinless chicken breasts
salt and pepper to taste

1 cup flour with 2 tsp salt mixed in
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
vegetable oil for frying, enough for 2-inches in a small pot
*Bake at 400 degrees F. for 15 minutes or until cooked through

56 comments:

Deniz Uz said...

This thing looks amazing, if a little too greasy. Can I use some other herb instead of parsley? Basil? Fresh thyme?

Spudlys Junk said...

Love all your recipes! Thank you for inspiring so many!

foolishranting said...

Chef John! I was wondering what were the sides that you served the chicken Kievs with? and if it's not too much trouble, how did you make them? Thanks a lot. :)

Roz said...

That looks wonderful, as always. Before I try this, I must first compose myself from the Housewives joke.

Roz said...

That looks wonderful, as always. Before I try this, I must first compose myself from the Housewives joke.

Dustin said...

What are you doing up so late John!!?

Dustin said...

What are you doing up so late John!?

Vincent said...

How about poaching the packets before breading and frying, instead of baking them afterwards?
I think I'll give that a try sometime in the near future.

Toni-kay Campbell said...

Just as I was reading up to before you said "If I do these for a larger group, I always do a few extra, so I can cut into one and double-check." I was thinking the exact same thing, if I make it i'm going to do an extra one just to cut n test for doneness.

Daniel Bottoms said...

this is amazing. i've watched sections of your video several times.... how you're able to make a "ball" out of this is beyond me!!! and it works! I've had this with terragon btw and it's wonderful, but flat leaf parsely is a winner.

frankly speaking, it looks like you're able to put in MORE garlic butter than the versions i know and have done... always a winner! will definately try this again and go for ball formation!!!

best from Austria as always! and thanks for inspiration!

Daniel

Aaron Chow said...

So funny you're my idol! One day I hope my blog gets as popular as yours.

Poet, Lover, Lunatic said...

Who else pronounces the "T" in pestle? Is that a Cali thing?

veraiscooking said...

Woah! This made my mouth watery. Sweet sweet weekend coming up and I'm going to spend it stuffing my face with this.

Scott Barber said...

Thank you for marking your territory... now we know it's really you.

Razmig Yahniyan said...

Dear Chef John,
Warm greetings and it's been awhile since i wrote to you,

it's funny that after you promised long ago to show us your sister's recipe for the Chicken Kiev it has finally happened, i remember from long time back you said you would one day show us and finally it's happened.

thank you as always and guess what my family is going to have for lunch this Sunday ?

You're the best Chef John !!!

your N# 1 fan from far away Beirut, Lebanon

Razmik

AKMoore said...

Chef John, when did your blog become political? can we expect more topical recipes from you in the future?

Sean said...

Wow. This is like the triple cork 1440 of chicken dishes. Scary to do yet so worth it if you pull it off.

Chef John said...

AK, Sorry, don't understand the question! Political?

Chef John said...

Sorry, never answered side question! Served with mashed potatoes and tomato-radish sprout salad. No recipes! Just that and oil and vin.

Chef John said...

Sorry, never answered side question! Served with mashed potatoes and tomato-radish sprout salad. No recipes! Just that and oil and vin.

Joel Bidnick said...

I think AK is referring to the fact that Kiev is burning at the moment.

This looks delicious, by the way !

Joel Bidnick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jude said...

Why not just make breaded cutlets with the garlic butter parsley sauce in a pan?

Chef John said...

Yeah, that's what I figured, but how is posting a chicken recipe political? Maybe he was drunk.

Chef John said...

Jude,

You can. And instead of ravioli, you can just eat pasta with ricotta. And instead of peanut butter cups, you can just stick chocolate into peanut butter, etc.

Eighth-dimension-guy said...

Thanks for the recipe! Not gonna lie, I'm only 15 and I did this recipe pretty easily. You're a huge inspiration to me!
-Lucas

Eighth-dimension-guy said...

Thanks for the recipe! I'm 15 and you're a huge inspiration to me. I just made this tonight for my mom and brother and they loved it!
Thanks again,
Lucas

Ed Adams said...

I'm in the middle of making this tonight and when I pounded the breasts flat, they just didn't come out anything like the ones on your blog. The ones you did look like a deformed T, mine look more like a rectangle. So far, everything else is coming out the same but I need to about double the time in my freezer. Living in Italy, utilizing borrowed appliances, I just don't have the same cooling power as you, but I'm used to improvising. I'm serving with an asparagus risotto with a gorgonzola cream sauce plus a light salad. Can't wait and thanks for the recipes Chef.

Linda said...

This looks amazing. Thank you so much for sharing.

Chloe Pollacco said...

I've always wanted to make something like this, looks so good! Thanks for sharing, I am now a follower! :D

Nise said...

I made your Chicken Kiev for dinner this evening! My family loved it! I did everything just as you said with no variation (smart girl). It came out perfectly and they loved the drama moment when they cut into the meat and the garlic/herb butter oozed out. (They'd inadvertently seen your video a few days ago as I was watching it, and they ooo'd and awww'd.) My chicken breasts were 10 oz each so I gave them a few extra minutes. I also served sauteed red cabbage (on hand from the garden) and mashed potatoes. Marbled brownies for dessert. Thank you, Chef, for yet another great recipe and, as always, you are hilarious!

Chef John said...

Sounds great! You have a lucky family. Thanks!

McShine said...

My gawd this looks amazing! Totally making these this weekend. Btw, you really like your Putin-puns, don't you ;)

Ed Adams said...

Well, mine turned out not exactly perfect. The taste/texture was everything I'd excpect, however the orgasmic moment of cutting into the chicken breast and having molten butter and garlic spew forth didn't quite happen. The garlic and herbs were all there but most of the butter leaked out. 1 of the 4 turned out okay, but it was my test breast :( Rave reviews from my dinner guests at the taste and they didn't know any better regarding the butter. So, all in all I'd chalk it up as a success with some good lessons learned.

Anders Östmark said...

That chicken Kiev has Always eluded me
Hard as hell to make
Fell in love with it in London at "the Prince Albert carvery" Perfect
But my own attempts ended up in the trashcan 80 percent of the time

Adam Reynolds said...

I enjoy your blog so much I actually sit through the boring pre-video advertisements even when I don't have to. Happy to have found you chef. Keep up the good work.

procrastineer said...

Chef John, I think AK is referring to the political unrest in Ukraine capital Kiev.

P Lusardi said...

Made this lat night. It was amazing! Turned out perfectly!

Jef Willemsen said...

Chef, I'll be hosting a dinner party for 15 people this week and I'm considering Chicken Kiev for the main course.

Do you think the end result would suffer if I already fried them in the (late) afternoon and put them in the oven later that night?

Chef John said...

Trust me, you do not want to do chicken kiev for 15. Just too risky, and that's a lot to go into the oven at one time. Maybe you can fry ahead, but never tried!

P Lusardi said...

When I was a kid Chicken Kiev was the fanciest thing I'd ever seen! Over the years I have tried and FAILED to recreate this dish. UNTIL NOW! I made this Friday night and it turned out perfectly. Be careful as you pound out the chicken, one of mine had a couple of small holes but I was able to save it in the breading process. I actually broke out my deep fryer to assure golden goodness. Paired it with a Viognier... yeah that's right, I'm grown and fancy now!

Jef Willemsen said...

Thanks chef, we've opted to do your chimichanga recipe from a while back :)

Damon Brown said...

Chef John,

Another BANGER! I followed your steps to the tee and I had tremendous results...my wife and I are still burping up garlic! HAHA...ok maybe TMI. But this was an awesome recipe once again. I did all the prep work beforehand...did the butter, put it in the fridge and then beat the chicken, wrapped it and put it in the fridge for maybe 2 hours until my wife got home. Followed the rest of steps from the freezer on after that and had no issues. I did add the tarragon and chives which I loved! I was very proud to complete the recipe with no leakage and also have the requisite explosion of herb butter when finished. I served this with mashed cauliflower and broccoli. Winner winner chicken dinner! Thanks again!

Chef John said...

Sounds great, thanks!

VictoriaG said...

Chef John,

Just made this for dinner tonight for my boyfriend an I. Followed the recipe to the T, and one word, delicious! Simply delicious. What a foody satisfying recipe. I will be making this again soon. Thank you for great recipe.

Victoria

VictoriaG said...

Chef John,

Made this tonight for dinner for my boyfriend and I. Followed the recipe to the T, and one word, delicious! Simply delicious. What a foody satisfying recipe. I will be making this again soon. Thank you for the great recipe

Victoria

Maria Hicks said...

Chef John,

I love your food blog and have many recipes I have on my to-do list yet. With that said....

If I wanted to make these ahead of time and freeze them, when would the best time be to freeze them? Before frying them or after they've partially (or fully) cooked?

I have a busy household, so making things ahead is great for me.

Thank you for such a wonder blog and easy to follow recipes.

Sincerely,
Maria

Chef John said...

Sorry, but never tried! It would work to freeze before frying, but then you'd have to thaw to fry.

Chef John said...

Sorry, but never tried! It would work to freeze before frying, but then you'd have to thaw to fry.

Chef John said...

Sorry, but never tried! It would work to freeze before frying, but then you'd have to thaw to fry.

jandres8 said...

Chef John! Made this 2 nights ago and it was great! It did take me longer to prep but, totally worth it! I was afraid I'd mess it up some how but I followed the steps exactly and it worked out fine!! Because of your videos I'm constantly trying new things! Thank you!

Natalia Zlotnikov said...

Thank you so much for your great videos! I have just tried making Chicken Kiev and it turned on to be so delicious. Looking forward to trying more of your recipes...on and love your sense of humor! FYI I did give you credit for recipe on our site...here is a link if you are interested to take a look. http://flavorshades.com/2014/03/chicken-kiev/

Stephie said...

Hey- Can Chef John or someone explain the the proportions for Chicken Kiev? In the ingredients it says 4 (8oz chicken breast) so 32oz of chicken? However in the video Chef says put half the butter on one of the chicken breast? Do I have my quantities wrong? When I made this there was sooo much chicken and not that nice pocket like in the video.

Chef John said...

Not sure I understand the question, but you have 4 large breast (8-oz each), and you have your butter mixture which you divide equally between the 4 breasts. Each breast gets about 1 1/2 tbsps of butter.

Al said...

Tried this today, had some guests over. It turned out AMAZING! Everybody loved it! Will definitely be making this again. Thank you so much for your effort in sharing this recipe :) Cheers! Aliya

Anna T said...

We made this yesterday, I was TERRIFIED... mostly because I've never deep fried on the stove before, but also because I was worried they wouldn't be done enough. The chicken was exactly 8oz each, one ended up being more of a mushroom top shape, the other a baseball. Baseball had some slight pink in it at the end, mushroom top was perfect. And they both exploded with such great flavour! I added some slivered basil into my herb butter because I had some fresh stuff. Out of this world. Thanks chef!

Pics: http://i.imgur.com/HgjUjdg.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/n9MqVcH.jpg
(I'm no food photographer!)