This Wild Garlic Chicken Kiev is easy and fun to put together and a seriously impressive & tasty dish you’ll enjoy sharing with friends.
Deeeeeelish. It has been far too many years since I’ve had a Chicken Kiev, and I’m pretty sure I’ve only ever eaten the frozen, mass produced variety. This homemade one has all the tasty characteristics you’d expect, with a seriously crunchy coating, and an oozy garlicky centre, but happily you get a bit more say over the quality of the chicken and other ingredients used.
Wild Garlic Chicken Kiev
Initially I just used wild garlic in the butter mixture but honestly, even before cooking, the flavour just wasn’t strong enough for my liking, hence why I added the regular garlic too. If it’s out of season, or you just can’t source any wild garlic, feel free to omit it, although you’ll be missing out on that lovely fresh jade like colour in the heart of the Wild Garlic Chicken Kiev.
As an added bonus, Jonny & I shared one Wild Garlic Chicken Kiev between us as they were huge. This left one whole Wild Garlic Chicken Kiev chilled in the fridge for lunch the next day. Sliced up over salad greens, garlicky butter all hardened and still nestled in the centre of that rolled chicken, it was a real treat and to be highly recommended making extra purely for the leftovers!
‘Chicken Kiev’ or ‘Chicken Kyiv’?
A quick point to mull over as you’re knocking up your homemade Chicken Kiev is the name itself.
I’m writing this paragraph in late March 2022, almost a month into the unjustified invasion of Ukraine by Russia.
As pointed out to me by a reader, “Kiev’ is the Russian language version of the Ukrainian capital’s name. The people of Ukraine spell it ‘Kyiv’, a very important difference at this time!
As we all know and love this dish as a Chicken Kiev, I don’t suppose we can change the name itself, but I thought it an important point to include.
- 60 g salted butter
- 3 tbsp wild garlic - a mix of leaves, flowers and stems. Finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic - finely minced
- 2 chicken breasts - skinless and boneless
- pinch salt
- pinch pepper
- 3 tbsp flour
- 2 eggs - beaten
- 3 tbsp breadcrumbs
- 2 tbsp oil
Remove the butter from the fridge and bring up to room temperature.
Ideally use a blender (or a wooden spoon and elbow grease!) to blend the softened butter, minced garlic and chopped wild garlic together into a bright green butter.
Scoop the butter out onto a sheet of cling film and roll up tightly into a sausage shape.
Place the garlic butter in the fridge for an hour, or the freezer for 10 minutes to harden.
- Preheat the oven to 180/350/Gas 4.
Butterfly a chicken breast by carefully slicing through the thinnest part of the breast and opening it up like a book. Don't cut right through.
Pop the chicken breast between two large pieces of cling film.
Using a rolling pin or mallet (meat tenderiser) bash it evenly all over until it is a thin, even sheet.
Be careful not to overdo it and create holes in the meat as you'll lose the garlic butter as it cooks.
The thinner it is, the better, but my first one was pretty chunky (about half an inch in places) and amazingly the butter stayed in situ perfectly even though it didn't roll up particularly neatly.
Season both sides of the meat sheet with salt and pepper.
Cut the sausage of garlic butter in half lengthways, and roll one half of it up in the chicken.
Aim to tuck the sides of the chicken in if possible.
Repeat with the second breast and rest of the butter.
(If you have any garlic butter leftover, you can re-wrap it in clingfilm and store it in the freezer.)
Place three bowls on your kitchen counter.
In the the first one add the flour, in the second one the eggs, and the final one the breadcrumbs.
Carefully pick up a stuffed chicken breast and dust it in the flour.
Then place it in the beaten eggs, turning it over to coat all sides.
Hold the chicken over the bowl to let the excess egg drip off, then roll it around in the breadcrumbs, coating all sides.
For an extra crispy crust, return the chicken to the egg mixture and finally the breadcrumbs.
Set aside and repeat with the second piece of chicken.
Ideally use a heavy frying pan you can use in a hot oven. A cast iron skillet is ideal for this.
Heat the pan on the hob over a medium high heat.
Add the oil and gently fry the Kiev’s until they are golden brown.
Place the skillet into the preheated oven (or onto a baking sheet if not using an oven proof pan) and bake for 20 minutes.
On removal from the oven, you can test the internal temperature to ensure the chicken is at, or above, 75C (167F).
I like to serve my chicken Kiev with mashed potatoes and green beans or peas.
When the crusty Kiev is cut into, a pool of molten garlic butter in released onto the plate flavouring all the other items on the plate. It’s heavenly!