Dried Figs with Chicken

8 Sunreal dried figs (rehydrated for 20 minutes in hot water), sliced in half
6 slices of bacon, cut into 25mm slices
2 stalks of celery, cut into 25mm pieces
2 carrots, cut into 25mm pieces
1 onion, cut into 25mm pieces
4 cloves of garlic, smashed and cut in half
2 sprigs of thyme, leaves off the stem
3 tbsp flour
2 tbsp tomato paste
1/3 cup of brandy or cognac
5 cups of vegetable or chicken stock
2 bay leaves
3 cloves
8 pieces of chicken (I used 4 drumsticks and 4 thighs – skin on)
salt and pepper
olive oil
  • In a heavy based skillet brown the bacon, allowing it’s fat to render. When it is browned, remove with slotted spoon and drain most of the rendered bacon fat, leaving only about 3 tablespoons.
  • Add the celery, carrots, onion, garlic and thyme and brown them in the bacon fat on medium heat for about 10 minutes.
  • Sprinkle the flour on the veggies and stir until it is all incorporated. Make a well in the veggies and add your tomato paste. Allow to cook for a few seconds then stir into the veggies. Cook for another minute. Turn down the heat and add your brandy.
  • Once it has evaporated, add your figs, stock, cloves and bay leaves and bring to a boil.
  • After it comes to a boil, reduce the heat so that it cooks at a gentle simmer. Stir occasionally.
  • In another skillet add some oil and brown your chicken in batches on a medium-high heat and cook, turning to brown both sides, about 5 minutes each side. Once browned remove your browned chicken to a plate for a moment while you brown remaining chicken pieces.
  • Add your chicken pieces back along with the crispy bacon and your figs to the sauce. Turn heat to medium and allow to cook uncovered at a simmer for about 25 minutes. After 20 minutes, cover and continue cooking for an additional 25 minutes.
  • Right before serving, remove figs and chicken pieces to separate pan. Take out bay leaves and discard. Using a potato smasher or hand blender, lightly crush (or quickly pulse hand blender a few times) the very soft veggies down.
  • Arrange some chicken and few figs on the plate and spoon some of the sauce on top.
  • Serve with roasted potatoes or a hunk of crusty country bread.

(Recipes and Images Copyright Chef Jimmy Boswell 2014)


Real Foods Limited is the exclusive New Zealand distributor of several Kiwi favourite brands including Sunreal, realFOODS, Sunreal Gourmet, realSWEET, Pureharvest, Fragata and Alpro, Roi Thai, King Island, Remedy and Craft Belgian Beer Brands - Delirium, Mongozo, Petrus, Bavik, Wittekerke, and Kwaremont. Find out why New Zealanders love the taste of our dried fruits and gluten-free cereals, Organic milks and delicious dairy-free custards and cream or find our products in a supermarket near you.

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