Thursday, October 12, 2006

Chicken with Figs and Gnocchi

If the last recipe with anchovies didn't scare you away from this blog, then you must be a true foodie. And any foodie would love this recipe. Packed with a broad array of textures and flavors, I was impressed with how complex and comforting this chicken was.

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 pound thick-cut pancetta, chopped
2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts and thighs, cut into large chunks
Salt and freshly ground pepper
All-purpose flour for dipping
1 large onion, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
14 to 16 dried Mission figs, quartered (cut the tops tiny tops off too)
1 1/2 cup dry red wine
2 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped thyme
One 12- to 16-ounce package fresh or frozen store-bought gnocchi
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped chives (10 chives)

Heat a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and the pancetta. Cook the pancetta for 5 to 6 minutes to brown and crisp it, then remove with a slotted spoon and reserve. Place a large pot of water on the stove to boil.

Season the chicken chunks with salt and pepper and dredge in a little flour. Reheat the skillet, add the chicken and brown over high heat for a few minutes on each side to brown, then scoot the meat to the edges of the pan and add the onion, garlic and figs. Cook for 5 minutes , then mix the chicken chunks into the onion and figs. Add the wine to the pan and cook it down for 5 minutes or so, until about 1/3 cup remains. Add the chicken broth, lemon juice and thyme, and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook the chicken another 10 minutes, while you prepare the gnocchi.

Salt the boiling water and add the gnocchi; cook according to the package directions, then drain. Re-heat the gnocchi pan over medium-low heat. Melt the butter and cook until the butter is browned. Add the gnocchi to the browned butter. Raise the heat to medium-high and lightly brown the gnocchi. Season the gnocchi with salt, pepper and the nutmeg, turning the gnocchi to coat. Add the chives, toss the gnocchi and remove from the heat.

Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning. If you would like a little more sauce, add 1/2 cup of broth to the pan. Mound the chicken and figs in shallow bowls and pile the gnocchi on top of the chicken in the center of the bowls. Garnish with the crisp pancetta sticks and serve.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my god, that is the most unappetizing thing I've ever seen.

9:09 AM

Blogger Badger said...

If we're going on appearances, you may as well strike a few other dishes from your potentials list, such ALL Chinese food, for example.

Or you could actually try something different, since it's delicious. :)

8:43 AM


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