Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Ijok’s Beggar Chicken

I initially wanted to write a review on Ijok’s famous Beggar Chicken (non-halal!), but after some thought, I figured that the story behind the chicken & pictures on how it’s made would be more interesting.

So, what is beggar’s chicken?

According to a website I found, it derived its name from an old Chinese story.

A homeless, starving beggar is wandering along a road when he catches sight of a chicken. Desperate for food, he kills the chicken by wringing its neck. Lacking a stove, he covers the chicken in mud, makes a fire and bakes it. (One version has him plucking the feathers off the chicken as he eats). At this point an Emperor passes by with his entourage. Attracted by the aroma of the baked chicken, he stops and dines with the beggar, demanding to know how he created such a delicious meal. "Beggar's chicken" is subsequently added to the list of dishes served at the Imperial court.

When I was younger, I heard another version whereby the beggar stole the chicken & subsequently realizes how amazing his wrapped in clay chicken was.. then proceeded to open a restaurant where he popularized his chicken.

But the website version sounds loads more legit so don’t mind me.

Heh.

Anyway, at Ijok, they employ the traditional method of cooking beggar’s chicken, resulting in a tender succulent chicken which practically melts in your mouth.

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An unattractive picture of a very yummy chicken.

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If you head to the back of the restaurant, you can see how they prepare the chicken. They don’t only cook chicken this way though. They do so with duck & pork as well! 

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There’s an oven at the back I believe where marinated chicken (or duck or pork or whatever) which has been wrapped in aluminum foil, paper, then clay is baked.

They then transport the baked chicken in a wheelbarrow to a man at the counter, who works at hacking off the clay and making the chicken look presentable.

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He cracks open the clay and peels off the paper layer..

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Revealing the aluminum foil within.

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This way, the chicken actually cooks in its own juice, leaving it perfectly moist and super tender!

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They are then served on dishes, looking very presentable..

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And suitable for consumption! Open-mouthed smile 

The place is normally quite packed though so if you’re interested in heading there, bookings should be made prior to your visit.

Word of advice?

Please order the pork knuckles and avoid the fish! The former was amazing and the latter was a disappointment. And you may want to Google map the place because it’s in a rural area.

Have fun! Open-mouthed smile

Address:
New Beggar's Delicious Restaurant
Ijok, Selangor Darul Ehsan

Tel:
03-3279 1936

6 comments:

  1. I guess I can only wonder how this would taste like...

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  2. @Ihsan Khairir
    They sell beggar chicken at other places too! Im sure there are halal places that do, fret not!

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  3. Do tell if you find out about such place, you made me curious :)

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  4. WHOAH! I NEVER KNEW THIS!! Never knew that they baked in mud or heard of the story before

    But I know that we have a chicken dish that looks the same as that! It's called differently though in fookien I think. I better ask my mom XD hahaha!

    Do you also have the black chicken in the black soup? I don't know what it's called in English. It has that red seed thingy too.. lol guess I'm not making any sense XD It's a bit medicinal and the taste doesn't really suit everyone

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  5. @tiff k

    Haha you're adorable la! Ahaha but yeah I think we do. Is it the red dates in it?

    Hah if I'm not mistaken, what youre referring to is what girls drink when we have our period. It apparently helps! :P

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