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Chicken Pudding, a Favourite Virginia Dish

Try this modern take on a historic quiche recipe and bring a bit of history to life while enjoying our recent article A Colonial Capital: Williamsburg, Virginia.


“Beat ten eggs very light, add to them a quart of rich milk, with a quarter of a pound of butter melted, add some pepper and salt; stir in as much flour as will make a good thin batter; take four young chickens, and after cleaning them nicely, cut off the legs, wings, &c. put them all in a sauce pan, with some salt and water, and a bundle of thyme and parsley, boil them till nearly done, then take the chicken from the water and put it in the batter, pour it in a deep dish, and bake it; send nice white gravy in a boat.”

— from The Virginia Housewife by Mrs. Mary Randolph, 1863 (recipe found on page 83)


4 large eggs

2 cups half and half

1/4 cup (1 stick) of butter

3 Tbsp. of flour

1/2 lb. shredded chicken

2 cloves fresh garlic, minced

1 tsp. ground thyme

1 Tbsp. fresh parsley, plus more for garnish (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a bowl, beat together eggs and milk until well blended.
  3. In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the stick of butter  until it foams then sprinkle in enough of the flour, salt and pepper. Stir constantly until well combined and mixture comes together to form a thin, blonde-colored paste.
  4. Add the egg and milk mixture to the sauce pan while constantly stirring. Whisk until smooth and remove from the heat.
  5. Add the chicken, garlic, thyme and parsley to the wet ingredients and stir together until well combined.
  6. Pour into a greased casserole dish or  9-inch pie plate.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes, a knife inserted in the center should come out clean.
  8. Allow to rest before serving. This recipe is great served with a sprinkle of chopped parsley or drizzled with gravy.