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Saturday, January 8, 2011

Crock-pot Balsamic Chicken with Figs

On my stepdaughter's last birthday we took her to a Spanish restaurant as a surprise.  Hubby & I used to always pass by the restaurant (seeing it from the freeway) back before we were married & I had always wanted to eat there.  One day a while back we went for one of our very rare date nights.  The menu is a little challenging at first, so many unfamiliar items & ingredients.  But once the food came we were thrilled beyond belief.  There's also a bit of terminology difficulty.  What the Spanish call certain foods is totally different than what the Mexicans call foods by the exact same name (like tortillas, for example!).  Fortunately I've taken enough Spanish classes (where they always focus on Spain Spanish even though we are 2 hours from the border of Mexico) that I already knew about that & warned my hubby.  Anyways, when we were last there, for my stepdaughter's birthday, my hubby ordered something (fish, I think, though it may have been chicken) & it had figs in the dish & hubby couldn't stop raving about those figs.  I kid you not, for WEEKS he was still going on about how good those figs were.  So I stumbled across this recipe shortly after I got my crock pot & I was soooo excited because it has figs!!  Of course I had to FIND figs, but I did (you can also order them online if you really can't find them in a store near you).  However, my hubby & step-son were less than impressed with this meal.  I think they just don't like the taste of the red wine.  I personally tasted it & thought it was really good.  I've never liked to drink wine, but I do like to cook with it.  And when I cook with white wine (this is the first time ever I have cooked with red wine) hubby never complains or even notices.  But this time he complained about the slight wine flavor & said he didn't like it.  So I doubt I'll be making it again, but I would still recommend it highly, unless you have a dislike for red wine.

CROCK-POT BALSAMIC CHICKEN WITH FIGS

2 Tablespoons oil
8 chicken breast halves, skin & bones removed
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 Cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 Cup ruby port wine
1/2 Cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon dried thyme
16 dried figs, cut in half

*sprinkle chicken breasts with s/p & brown in oil, then transfer to crock pot
*deglaze pan with vinegar & port, scraping up anything stuck to pan
*add broth & transfer all 3 liquids to crock pot
*add thyme & figs & stir to combine
*cover & cook on high for 2 hours, until chicken is cooked through & sauce is syrupy

Note 1: I could not find "ruby port" wine, so I substituted a sweet red wine

Note 2: I really prefer to cook things on low, provided I have enough time to do so, I feel like that's the whole point of the crock pot & the food is more flavorful that way & there's less chance of scorching, but this recipe didn't give that option.  It only specified to cook on high, so I'm assuming it just didn't come out as good on low, so I followed the rules & cooked it on high.  Based on my past experience though, thawed chicken breast dishes usually take about 4 hours on low.

2 comments:

Pretty Pauline said...

I love figs! All of your recipes look scrumptious.

Frau Guten Tag said...

Thank you!