Tender chicken rubbed with rosemary and garlic then roasted slowly in the oven are delicious with apples and figs spooned over top. Served with mashed potatoes and salad, this is a company worthy dish that is made ahead, so the actual cooking time is a lot less work than you’d expect.
Rosemary Garlic Chicken with Apple and Fig Compote
Adapted from Fine Cooking Nov 2008
3 Tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, minced
5 cloves garlic, minced
4 boneless, skin ON chicken breasts (you can buy bone in ones, but then you have to de-bone them)
1 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored, cut into 1/3 inch pieces
2 oz dried figs
1/3 cup red currant jelly
¼ cup dry white wine (Sauvignon Blanc)
1 tsp dry mustard
½ tsp yellow mustard seeds
¼ cup chopped, toasted walnuts
1 day ahead: prepare the chicken and compote
Mix up the rosemary, garlic, oil, about ½ tsp pepper, and ¼ tsp salt together. The original recipe called for 2 tsp of salt and even though I reduced it considerably, the end result was WAY too salty. Use your own discretion. I figure that you can always add more salt later, so I’d err on the side of caution.
De-bone your chicken, or if your chicken is already boneless, cut out the tenderloin. You can keep those pieces for a stir fry or to make chicken fingers out of. Make sure to leave the skin ON, because you’ll need it. Pat the meat and skin all over with paper towel to dry it off.
Rub the garlic/rosemary mixture all over the pieces of chicken, under the skin, on the skin, both sides, etc. Stack two breasts together, skin side out, with the thicker end of the breast on top of the thinner end. Tie together with butcher’s twine. Now, I couldn’t find butcher’s twine where I am, so I used small skewers to ‘pin’ them together, which doesn’t work that well.
Put the breast roasts on a tray and chill in your fridge, uncovered, overnight.
In a small saucepan, stir together all the compote ingredients. Bring to a boil on medium high heat, then reduce the heat and allow to simmer for about 10 minutes, until the apples are soft but not mushy. Cool the mixture to room temperature, then refrigerate. Before serving, allow to come to room temperature. I heated mine up a little on the stovetop.
The day you are serving:
Take the chickens out of the fridge and let them sit on the counter for 30 minutes to come up to room temperature. Pre-heat the oven to 450 F.
In a skillet, heat a glug or so of oil until shimmering, and then sear the chicken roasts on all sides. It will take about 5-8 minutes or so, and then remove them to a rack on a roasting pan. Roast in the oven for about 20-30 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the center reads 165 F. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes before slicking into medallions.
Serve with the compote spooned on top.