I’ve had been a fan of the Modernist Cuisine books for a long time and although it can take quite a while to cook some of the recipes the ‘At Home‘ book has lots that are very easy. Luckily it doesn’t take long until you branch out and make your own recipes, like this one for Chicken Kiev:
It’s a bit of a retro favourite and normally you end up with garlic butter leaking out… not a bad thing but it won’t happen with this recipe.
Anyway the first step is to make the garlic butter. I always have President in the fridge but any unsalted butter will work. For 25g of butter I used 3 cloves of garlic and… er… that much fresh parsley.
Finely chop the garlic and sprinkle over some sea salt. Use the side of your knife to grind the garlic into a paste.
Chop up the parsley and smush it all together with your hands… it’s the easiest way.
By this point the butter will have started to melt a bit so spread it thinly between two sheets of cling film and put it in the freezer.
While it’s setting up you’ll have time to cut the chicken, you normally use breast but this technique would work for thigh as well.
What you are aiming to do it butterfly the breast which means you cut it in half but not all the way. Put your hand flat on top of the chicken and carefully cut through the chicken… but not all the way.
Hopefully it will look like this. The middle might be a bit thicker but that’s fine… you can squash it down with the heel of you hand.
The butter should be pretty firm again so take it out of the freezer and cut it to fit the chicken. If you have two breast then cut it in half like I did.
Ok, here’s the science-y part. You’re going to glue the chicken back together, with science. Maybe not science but with an enzyme, a transglutaminase or as the food industry calls it… Meat Glue. It’s an enzyme naturally found in meat and works but joining amino acids (which proteins are made from) together.
This means when you apply it to the two sides of the chicken, they’ll stick back together. You can get buy it in 100g bags from Amazon and it should last a long time… I only used 10 grams for two breasts and another ‘experiment’!
You can either put it on as a powder or as a paste. I did both. The paste is 1 part powder and 4 parts ice cold water.
I found it quick difficult to stop lumps forming in the paste since I was only making a small amount. You spread the paste where the chicken sides will meet and then I added a little more powder just in case.
To keep the chicken sides pressed together you can wrap them in cling film and put something heavy on top (like that can of beans that has never left the cupboard). If you’ve got a vacuum sealer then you can use that too.
Leave it in the fridge for at least 5 hours then cover in seasoned flour, then dip in beaten egg and cover in breadcrumbs: Panko are the best but you can use normal breadcrumbs like I did.
Cook in the oven until golden – about 20 mins at 180C or deep fry in 160C oil for about 7 minutes.