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15 Interesting Beggar’s Chicken Facts

by Sankalan Baidya
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Beggar’s chicken

Traveling around the world, you will often come across some of the most disgusting foods you can think of. Then again, you will also experience some of the most delicious food you can think of. However, you will often find that no matter how tasty a food is, it has one hell of a stupid name. The Beggar’s Chicken is one such food. It is really tasty but its name is quite misleading. Let us, in this article titled 15 interesting Beggar’s Chicken facts, find out what this food is all about. You ready?

Interesting Beggar’s Chicken Facts: 1-7

1. You might be inclined to think that the Beggar’s Chicken is a dish prepared especially for beggars. If you are thinking so, you are wrong! It is a delicacy sold in restaurants.

2. This dish is actually a Chinese dish and like several other Chinese delicacies, this dish also gets its name from a legend.

3. This originally came from Changshu district of Jiangsu province.

4. The dish, as the name suggests is actually a chicken. However, it is not a curry or something. It is roasted chicken with the speciality being that the chicken is stuffed and the wrapped in clay and finally roasted for 6 hours.

5. That’s quite a long time to roast a chicken especially if you come to know that one Beggar’s Chicken cooked over 6 hours is enough only for a single serving!

6. What is used as stuffing? Well, there is no such thing as standard rule. Different people stuff different ingredient inside the chicken.

7. Stuffing varies widely. The most widely used stuffing is actually a mixture of pork, mushrooms and vegetables.

Interesting Beggar’s Chicken Facts: 8-15

8. So, what’s the secret behind this peculiar name? According to a legend, once a hungry beggar stole a live chicken while walking through a village from a farm. The story is back from the times of Qing Dynasty.

9. Unfortunately, the farm owner saw the beggar stealing the chicken and chased him. Being chased, the beggar had no other option but to kill the chicken and burry it in mud on the bank of a river and somehow managed to escape.

10. Later, the beggar returned after sunset and unearthed the chicken. He was hungry and wanted to eat the chicken as soon as possible. He did not have the patience to clear the mud stuck on the chicken. He simply lit a fire using twigs and threw the chicken wrapped in mud into the fire.

11. Because of the heat, the mud or the clay around the chicken formed a hard outer shell or curst. After a while, the beggar cracked open the curst. As he started removing the clay crust, the feathers of the chicken started coming off only to reveal the soft and tender cooked meat.

12. At that exact time, as per the legend, the Emperor was passing from there and stopped to taste the chicken. It is being said that the Emperor loved the chicken so much that he had the dish added to the menu of his Imperial Court.

13. Later the beggar started selling his accidentally discovered dish to local villagers and then gradually made a fortune out of it.

14. As of today, the Beggar’s Chicken is a haute cuisine of the Chinese people. It is sold in many restaurants and everyone uses somewhat different method to cook the chicken. The most common practice is roasting the chicken by wrapping it in lotus leaves.

15. Some restaurants may even use a clay wrapping over the lotus leaves wrapping to add more authenticity to the dish. Some may use aluminum foil instead of lotus leaves. The end result is a less greasy, aromatic, tender and fresh roasted chicken which tastes really good.

The whole of internet is flooded with different recipes of preparing Beggar’s Chicken. In case you want to know how to make it, head over to this link or this or perhaps this. You may find other websites too! If you have tasted or prepared Beggar’s Chicken do let us know about your experience. We will love to hear from you.

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