City Chicken

This weekend, my in-laws came over to celebrate a VERY late Christmas with us. When I was thinking of the menu for the night, I kept thinking back to the first time we all went out to dinner together. So I settled on a re-creation of what I knew was my father-in-laws favorite dish.

I did a little bit of research on City Chicken and I was surprised to realize it’s not a dish that’s around much anymore. I think part of the reason has to do with the changing meat prices over the years.

You see, City Chicken was developed around the 1930s as a way to knock-off chicken without spending the money on chicken. The traditional City Chicken recipes uses cubes of pork, veal and beef. The cubes of meat are skewered, breaded, fried and baked. The thought is that the meat on the skewer resembles a chicken leg. Obviously these days it would be much more economical to just make some breaded chicken legs.

However, City Chicken definitely stands on its own as a tasty, down-home comfort food. I made our skewers with just pork and they were so delicious. My husband is insisting that this recipe makes it onto our regular rotation.

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City Chicken

  • 2 lbs. boneless pork cutlets, cubed
  • Bamboo skewers, cut in half and soaked in water for at least 20 minutes
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 c. milk
  • 1 c. breadcrumbs
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1 t. each salt, pepper, paprika
  • 6 T. butter
  • 2 c. chicken stock
  • 1/4 – 1/3 c. flour

1. Skewer about 5-6 cubes of pork on each bamboo skewer.

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2. In a shallow plate, whisk together eggs and milk. In a second shallow plate, combine flour, bread crumbs and seasonings. Dip skewers in eggs then in flour mixture until completely covered. Refrigerate breaded skewers for at least 30 minutes to help the breading stick.

3. Melt butter in a large skillet. Place as many skewers as will fit in the skillet. Brown on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a baking dish. Once all browned skewers are in baking dish, pour chicken stock on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 – 1 1/2 hours.

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4. Remove pork from the oven. Pour the baking liquid into a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Dissolve flour in an equal amount of water. Slowly drizzle the flour into the pan and stir. Boil until thickened to desired consistency. Serve gravy with the city chicken skewers.

8 thoughts on “City Chicken

  1. We make this as well, but can also buy a frozen version– called polkabobs. Odd. But yummy. Always have it at Christmas, and almost all full family gatherings

  2. I grew up eating City Chicken. . our local grocery store sells them already skewered! My mom never baked them though, she fried them in an electric skillet then once they were brown she would add some broth and put the lid on and let them cook for another 20-30 min. YUM!!!

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