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Oct 24, 2012 06:36 PM

read in a book [moved from U.K./Ireland]

hello, im in the usa and i am reading a book by dick francis "10 LB Penalty" my question is the 2 main characters stop at "take-away" and buy "chicken wings with bananas and bacon".what the heck is "chicken wings with bananas and bacon". please take note...i am a chef. never even would think of this combo.

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  1. That would be Chicken Maryland. In the UK, it usually consists of breadcrumbed and fried chicken breast with bacon and fried bananas. It's found on Chinese takeaway menus.

    6 Replies
    1. re: FarleyFlavors

      You learn something new every day...

      1. re: FarleyFlavors

        I've seen chicken and banana dishes (Caribbean ones?), and I think I may have seen a chicken Maryland type thing many moons ago which may have even included plantain. But with bacon too ...?

        It's not only bizarre as a combination, but also as an option on a Chinese takeaway menu ... I have to say that I have never seen it on any menu, let alone a Chinese takeaway one (and where I live (Liverpool) all chippies are Chinese). Maybe it's a London thing? And maybe (as it's a Dick Francis novel) it's a 70s London thing? Sounds likely - the era when we were trying to be more adventurous with food - with many mistakes along the way!

        1. re: Theresa

          Definitely not "a London thing" - a quick google for "chicken maryland chinese menu" and you get takeaway menus from Belfast to Dundee to Axminster. It does seem to be more popular in Scotland and Northern Ireland though.

          1. re: Theresa

            It does sound very 70s. I remember seeing it in the Turkish take away when I lived in Islington in the late 70s, on the menu as "Merryland Chicken". I never knew what it was though. It certainly isn't Caribbean - you're probably thinking of dishes made with plantain, which looks like a banana, but needs cooking.

            Why not try and make it halochef? It certainly doesn't sound appealing.

            1. re: Lord Brazing

              chicken maryland is a dish in the states where breast of chicken is sauted or baked served on ham and toast points. topped w/ a creamed mushroom sauce. northeast part .
              maks sense about the plantains instead of banana. not as sweet. that was my first thought.
              book was published in '97
              thanks all

              1. re: halochef

                Chicken Maryland to me is fried chicken (pieces, not just breast) with a milk gravy - never heard of the ham or toast points. Corn fritters, yes. No bananas.
                OK, I just went to look it up in the Bible, aka the Joy of Cooking and according to them it's more oven-fried (breaded,browned, then baked) than fried. And they suggest ham fritters, so there's the ham. But nothing about bananas - that's definitely some kind of UK thing.

        2. For sure sounds to be an interesting one... I love dishes of chicken, can you guide me if the book has any relevant recipe.

          1. Chicken Maryland, with bananas and bacon, is an absolute 1960/1970s classic. I used to cook it regularly as something "posh" for midweek. Chicken breast was always breadcrumbed and the other classic accompaniment was sweetcorn fritters.
            My recollection is that recipes always included a gray made with something vile (coffee?) but I never made that.

            Never seen it on a takeaway menu, then or now. That said, chicken wings are a comparitively recent introduction to the takeaway scene - I assume it's another American influence.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Harters

              "My recollection is that recipes always included a gravy made with something vile (coffee?) but I never made that. "

              That would be red-eye gravy which is made with pan-drippings, like bacon fat, and black coffee. Very big in the South. Not a favorite of mine either, but then I didn't grow up with it.For what it's worth I also don't associate it with this dish, which has a milk gravy.

              1. re: ratgirlagogo

                That's it!

                I remember the odd name now you mention it - is there a reason why gravy might be called "red eye"?

                1. re: Harters

                  Because the black coffee in it will wake you up when you're exhausted/hungover. The same way an overnight flight is called a red-eye because you're bleary and red-eyed when you arrive.

                  1. re: ratgirlagogo

                    Thanks - makes sense now you've explained it.

            2. I was under the impression that it was Mrs. Simpson's OTHER contribution to British life, that she used it to entertain.