Saturday, September 3, 2011
In this household though, most of the time, those roasts are just going to be chicken breasts. I can still stuff them with fruits, can't I?
My brain really took a strange detour because I started thinking of dried fruits. I don't know why. I tend to prefer just about any fruit fresh to their dried versions (except for apricots). Dried fruits are almost always too sickly-sweet for me. Despite all of that, I found myself thinking of dried figs.
I came quite late to the fig party. My experience with figs either came encased in a cookie or else seeing how much my grandmother enjoyed dried figs. They never thrilled me. I wasn't crazy about the taste or texture. Three years ago I tried fresh figs for the first time and discovered how much I loved them. Like grapes and plums, their edibility increased manifold when they were fresh.
I can't explain to you why I decided it would be fun to stuff a chicken breast with dried figs. I just couldn't get the idea out of my mind. I specifically wanted to soak the dried figs in booze and mix them with pine nuts. I was just compelled to make that a recipe.
I originally wanted to soak my figs in marsala, but learned at the last minute that I had none. I decided to try bourbon instead. I love cooking with bourbon even if I don't like drinking it. I soaked my figs for about 30 minutes and ground them up in the food processor.
I call it chicken newton for obvious reasons. I can't get the cookie connection out of my head.
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, tenders removed, pounded thin
15 dried figs
1/2 cup bourbon
6-12 slices prosciutto
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/2 cup chicken broth
Salt and pepper
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Soak figs in bourbon about 30 minutes. Reserve soaking liquid and grind the figs in a food processor. Stir the pine nuts into the ground fig mixture.
Lay out the chicken pieces. Place 1-2 slices of prosciutto over the top. Spread about 2 Tbl of the fig/nut mixture onto the chicken. Roll up and place in pan.
Sprinkle chicken rolls with salt and pepper and place in the oven. Cook 15 minutes. Mix together the bourbon and the chicken stock and pour into the pan. Cook an additional 15 minutes.