Yes, there really is Chicken Kiev in Kiev
Ever since I've known I was going to be in Kiev for a meeting I kept asking, "Can you get Chicken Kiev in Kiev?" Frankly, no one really answered me. I'm guessing no one knew. I googled Chicken Kiev and came to find out that Chicken Kiev has several stories of how it came to be - none of which involve Kiev. It's believed a French chef invented it. If you've never tried it, it's a pounded chicken filet that is stuffed with a butter herb sauce, rolled up, breaded and baked. When you cut into it, the buttery goodness oozes out all over your plate. I've always been a fan, but I have especially fond memories of having the classic Chicken Kiev at the Russian Tea Room in New York. It was simply delicious with a glass of champagne. There's also a tale that says New York restaurants just started calling the dish Chicken Kiev to entice Russian diners to their establishments.
My first meal in Kiev was at the Hotel Lybid's restaurant. I'm staying there and let's face it flying half way around the world is exhausting under even the best circumstances, and a stop over at Heathrow did not make things any easier.
I asked my very attentive waitress for a local beer to try. Of course, the name of the beer is Crabymur - perfect for crabby little me. I have to say it was quite good. I told her I wanted to order the borscht (not in the bread bowl as they suggested) and something else not too heavy. She suggests, wait for it, Chicken Kiev. oo funny. So, of course, I had to order it.
My borscht came and it was magnificent. I've had borscht before and I like it but this one had a lot more herbs and spices, nice hunks of potato and pork fat. Yes, pork fat. I have to admit, I passed on the fat. With 18 more international trips coming up this year, my guess is that if I can maintain my weight it will be a minor miracle. It came with two lovely warm rolls with a gravy boat of buttery, oily garlic parsley sauce to pour/dip the bread in. I almost died and went to heaven right there. But the Chicken Kiev was still to come.
When it arrived it was the cutest little thing with even a paper decoration on it's faux leg and some mashed boiled potatoes as well as some shoestring fried potatoes. It was very good. The breading was thicker than most of the Chicken Kiev I've had in the past but it was delicious. The gooey buttery filling also did not disappoint. I finished it up and couldn't eat a bite more. We'll have to save experimenting with some desserts for tomorrow.
Can't wait to see what else awaits me in Kiev.