Beggars' Chicken is also named as Stewed Chicken by Yellow Mud. According to the folk legend, a beggar had a chicken one day. Because he could not eat the chicken raw and had no tableware or flavor to cook the chicken, he killed the chicken at the foot of Tiger Mountain and removed its viscera. He covered the chicken with yellow mud without first removing its fur, and then put the chicken on fire to stew it. He removed the mud shell formed and the chicken’s fur was removed together with the shell. Its taste was unique and fragrant. Later, the dish was popular with rural areas.
As society progresses, people develop more and more elaborate cooking methods. When they prepare the beggars' chicken, they constantly promote new cooking methods. Now, the main method and dosing for cooking beggars’ chicken in Xiangfan: first choose a good chicken (for example, a three-yellow chicken or local chicken; a broiler chicken should not be used); remove the fur after killing the chicken; open its chest, remove the viscera, and clean the chicken; then put accessories including mushrooms and sliced hams as well as shallot, ginger, anise, black pepper, cooking wine, and white sugar into the chicken; package the chicken well with lotus leaf and then cover it with yellow mud. After elaborate stewing, the beggars' chicken is completed. Before enjoying the prepared dish, open the mud shell and remove the lotus leaf. Put the chicken on a plate and then add sesame oil. Eat the chicken by dipping a bit into a thick sweet sesame sauce. The chicken retains its shape with bright skin. The soft and crispy chicken tastes tender and delicious. The original taste and fragrance spreads out with unique local style of Xiangfan.