More than 35,000 people turn out each year to honor a dish few outside of Horry County – home to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina – have ever heard of. It’s called Chicken Bog and its origins date back hundreds of years.
Easy to make, hearty enough to stand alone and able to feed a large crowd, it’s no wonder chicken bog has even caught the eye of Ms. Paula Dean herself.
There are many different ways to make Chicken Bog, from adding fresh vegetables like onions and green peppers to dressing with a unique selection of spices. But everyone agrees on the three staples: chicken, rice and sausage.
At the Loris Bog-Off Festival, experts and home cooks work to earn the title of Bog-Off Champion by serving up their own version of the tasty dish. Though most say they stick to the traditional dish for the Bog-Off, in the end many claim it’s the love they add that makes theirs unique.
The event is now in its 36th year and will be held on October 17, 2015. The festival will also have a children’s area, more than 200 different vendors, a car and tractor show, fireworks, and two stages with live entertainment. The event is free to the public.
Want to try your hand at Bog? Here’s a traditional recipe from the Loris Chamber of Commerce:
6 cups water
1 T salt
1 onion, chopped
1 (3-pound) whole chicken
1 cup long-grain white rice
1/2 pound smoked sausage, sliced
2 T Italian-style seasonings
2 cubes chicken bouillon
Place water, salt and onion in a large pot. Add chicken and bring to a boil; cook until chicken is tender, about 1 hour. Remove chicken from pot and let cool. Remove skin and bones and chop remaining meat into bite-size pieces. Skim off fat from cooking liquid and measure 3 1/2 cups of this chicken broth into a 6-quart saucepan. Add rice, chicken pieces, sausage, herb seasoning and bouillon. Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer and cook covered for 30 minutes. If mixture is too watery or juicy, cook over medium-low heat, uncovered, until it reaches the desired consistency. Stir often while cooking.