Make Ahead

Chicken Bog

January 21, 2018
11 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves a crowd
Author Notes

This chicken bog is one of my favorite things to serve to a crowd on game day (or for any casual gathering). It’s a rich stew with rice from the coastal region of South Carolina, and the name “bog” is thought to reference the way the chicken sits in the stew like mounds in a bog, or the boggy Lowcountry where rice is grown. My version is a combination of Robert Stehling’s, the chef at Charleston’s Hominy Grill, and Matt and Ted Lee’s, from The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook.

Don’t skip the Dijon mustard at the end: it’s my very favorite part of cooking this dish. It lends so much complexity and depth of flavor, with little discernible mustard flavor after it’s incorporated. If you like chicken livers or giblets (a common ingredient in many bogs), feel free to sauté in butter and stir them end near the end. The bog can be made a day in advance, and warmed on the stove. Serve the bog in big bowls, over a mound of white rice, with hot sauce passed on the side.

Featured In: Low-Key, Lowcountry Chicken and Rice For Game/Any DayEmilyC

What You'll Need
  • 4 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • Kosher salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, peanut oil, or vegetable oil
  • 3 bell peppers, diced (all red, or a mix of colors)
  • 1 large (or 2 small) yellow onion, diced
  • 4 celery ribs, trimmed and diced
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 28-ounce can whole tomatoes, with liquid
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1 pound kielbasa (could also add cooked ham, bacon, andouille, etc.), chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • Hot sauce, to taste
  • For serving: 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley; cooked long-grain white rice
  1. Dry chicken well. Season both sides with salt and pepper. Add oil to a a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the chicken thighs (skin-side down) and sear until golden on both sides, about 4 minutes per side. (Brown in batches if needed so they don’t steam.) Remove chicken to a plate; set aside. Leave 2 to 3 tablespoons of fat in the pan; drain off any excess.
  2. To the pan, add the peppers, onion, celery, thyme, and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes; season with pinch or two of salt and pepper. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Add tomatoes (cut into small chunks with kitchen shears right in the pan) and bring to a boil; adjust heat so mixture gently simmers.
  3. While you’re sweating the vegetables, make the dark roux by melting the butter in a small skillet or saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stir until smooth. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture turns a deep chestnut brown in color, about 10 minutes. Add the roux to the simmering tomatoes; cook about 5 minutes.
  4. Return the chicken thighs to the pan, and add kielbasa, stock, and bay leaves; simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked through.
  5. Remove chicken with tongs to a large plate; when cool enough to handle, remove skin and chicken from the bone; shred the meat; and return to the pan. Continue to simmer. (At this point, the bog can gently simmer on the stove for several hours; add a little water or stock, if needed, if it starts to dry out.)
  6. When ready to serve, stir vinegar and mustard into stew. Taste, and adjust seasoning and acidity (I usually add at least 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar). Remove and discard bay leaves. Add hot sauce, to taste, and pass more when serving. Stir in parsley, and serve over white rice.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Ashley
  • meganvt01
  • laura
  • EmilyC

Recipe by: EmilyC

I'm a home cook. I love salads. Two things you'll always find in my refrigerator are lemons and butter, and in my pantry good quality chocolate and the makings for chocolate chip cookies.

14 Reviews

Ashley February 6, 2018
This was really delicious. I made it last night with only minor variations - dried thyme instead of fresh, whole grain dijon, and a chicken bone broth I made earlier in the week.
EmilyC February 7, 2018
Wonderful--so glad you liked it! Thanks for your note.
gandalf February 5, 2018
The more that I think about this, it seems to be a South Carolina version of jambalaya: you have the "Holy Trinity" of Cajun cooking -- onions, bell peppers, and celery -- plus a roux, plus sausage, and rice. The addition of the mustard and the cider vinegar is a bit different than what I've eaten in Louisiana.

At any rate, I love me some jambalaya; and I am planning to make your recipe very soon!
EmilyC February 5, 2018
Yes, they're so much alike! If you like jambalaya, I'm sure you'll like this too! I'm not sure you'd ever find shrimp or crawfish in chicken bog, and as a stew, bog has more liquid, but yes, so many similarities. Hope you try and like it! Please report back. : )
gandalf February 6, 2018
I made this last night; I tweaked some of the ingredients based on what I had on hand, but nothing major. It was very well-received by the family -- despite a comment from my wife that "bog" was British slang for "toilet," ha ha!

I will definitely make this again.
EmilyC February 7, 2018
Ha, thankfully the dish is more appetizing than its name suggests! : ) I'm really glad your family liked it -- thanks for circling back!
meganvt01 February 4, 2018
Just made this and it is another winner from Emily. The smell simmering away was mouth watering and the flavor does not disappoint!
EmilyC February 5, 2018
Megan: I'm so, so delighted that you made and liked this! I agree, the smell of this simmering away is nearly as good as eating a big bowl of it! Thanks so much for trying it and letting me know! xo
Nicole February 3, 2018
This was really great, thank you! I used andouille and it added a wonderful smoky flavor. Also, after I took the chicken skins off I fried them, cut them into slices/pieces added salt and threw them on top - I really liked this textural difference and punch of flavor.
EmilyC February 5, 2018
Nicole: GREAT idea on the chicken skins--yum! So glad you enjoyed the dish! Thanks for your note.
laura February 1, 2018
The flavor here is divine. I improvised with what I had on hand -- I used leftover cooked chicken breasts, and I didn't have much celery so used a little carrot, and the sausage I used was Austrian bratwurst. So I started with step #2 and just added the cooked chicken toward the end. I had never made a southern style roux like this, and now I want to add it to everything. Such depth of flavor that really makes this a winning dish for me. I'll make it again per the recipe, but this was already outstanding. Thank you for this new and interesting dish, I'll gladly add it to my rotation of winter meals. The bonus was that this one cleaned out the fridge too :)
EmilyC February 1, 2018
You’re welcome—I’m so glad you liked the dish and made it work with what you had on hand!! And I couldn’t agree more about how that dark roux works wonders here! Thanks for your note!
gandalf January 31, 2018
Your ingredients call for 6 Tbsp. of butter; but I see only 4 Tbsp. of butter used in the directions (making the roux). Have I missed where the other 2 Tbsp. of butter are used?
EmilyC January 31, 2018
Only 4 tablespoons are butter are needed if you're making this without the sautéed chicken livers and giblets! I've updated the recipe. Thanks for the good catch!