Chicken bog is a delicious chicken, rice and sausage dish, and it’s very much a South Carolina thing. If you mention it, folks in surrounding states are likely to give you a blank stare. It’s closely related to chicken pilau (or pilaf or perlo), except that it’s … well, boggier. It’s moister than chicken perlo, which is more common in Georgetown County, just to the south of Horry County. The name “bog” probably comes from the wetness of the dish, although some speculate that it may come from the bogginess of the area where it is popular.
South Carolinians, especially in the Low Country, have long had a love affair with rice. Throughout the 1700s and until the Civil War, South Carolina was the largest rice producer in the nation, but rice wasn’t grown commercially through the 1900s. In recent years, Carolina Plantation Rice in Darlington and Anson Mills, based in Columbia, have begun growing rice again. While there are recipes around that include green peppers and other vegetables, purists insist that the only ingredients should be chicken, smoked sausage, rice, salt and pepper and perhaps onion. Put a few drops of your favorite hot sauce on top, and it should be perfect.
Chicken bog is fairly simple and quick to make, and it’s a great way to feed a large crowd.