Contrary to other parts of the world, where breast meat is almighty, in Hungary the most popular parts of the chicken are thighs and drumsticks. It’s not by chance because those parts are more savory than the dry chicken breast. Thighs and drumsticks are usually breaded and fried, or simply baked in the oven. But if we want to pimp them up, we stuff the legs.
The Hungarian style stuffing adds great flavour to chicken. It generally consists of mushrooms and/or liver and it’s seasoned with salt, pepper and parsley. You can use whole legs or only thighs, whatever you choose, you don’t need to bone them as the stuffing is put in a pocket formed with your fingers under the skin. If there is any leftover stuffing after you have prepared the eggs, don’t discard it, but put it in the baking pan as well and bake it with the legs. I use oven bag for baking because it doesn’t require additional fat, but feel free to roast your chicken legs in the traditional way.
- 6 chicken legs
- 100 g (~3 1/2 oz) mushrooms, finely diced
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 30 g (~1 oz) butter
- 100 g (~3 1/2 oz) chicken livers
- 1 slice of bread
- 100 ml (~1/2 cup) milk
- 1 large egg
- 2 tbsp breadcrumbs
- 2-3 sprigs of parsley, finely chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
Wash and clean the chicken legs. Dry the legs with paper towels, salt and pepper them.
Melt the butter in a non-stick pan and sauté the onions until translucent. Add diced mushrooms and a pinch of salt, and cook until mushrooms are tender and all the liquid boils away. Set aside and let it cool.
Wash and clean the livers, discard sinews, and puree with a hand blender or scrape them with a knife. Soak the bread slice in milk, then squeeze it out as well as possible. Place the liver purée, egg, sautéed onion and mushrooms, soaked bread, chopped parsley, breadcrumbs, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and pepper in a bowl and mash them together with clean hands.
Insert your finger carefully between the meat and skin of each chicken leg to form a pocket. Fill the pockets evenly with the stuffing mixture. Place the legs, filled sides up, in an oven bag. Form any leftover stuffing into a ball or elongated shape, and put it in the oven bag, too. Bake at 180°C / 356°F until chicken is cooked through, then increase the heat to 210°C / 410°F and roast until golden brown.