Roast Chicken with Figs

IMG_2161We grew up eating dried fruit and nuts for dessert.  The nuts were in their shells, and were left out on the dining room table with a nutcracker on top.  I am sure my mother bought them that way because she thought they were fresher, but the unintentional result was that you actually needed to sit around the table to shell them.  Pieces of shell would fly as I tried to crack walnuts, filberts, and almonds on my own. The walnuts were the most challenging, hard to crack because of the uneven shell, and prying out the walnut meat was a delicate and time-consuming task in itself.  I was impatient and my father would take over, proud when he was able to remove a walnut half intact.  The dried fruit was typically dates, or figs imported from Greece, pierced and on a string.
On my first trip to Israel I went to Kfar Meishar to visit family friends.  The Unterstein’s had a pecan orchard and so once again I found myself sitting around a table and shelling nuts.  Tonight is Tu Bishvat and that makes me think of Israel, and because it is also Shabbat, we planned a menu around this New Year of the Trees.  We have chicken with figs, olive oil cake, dried fruit, and  walnuts still in their shell, with my parents’ nutcracker on top.  I can’t wait to see if anyone will even be tempted to use it, other than myself.
Roast Chicken with Figs 
2 chickens cut in eighths
Marinade
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 /2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
6 cloves of garlic
1 cup dry white wine
salt and pepper
Combine in food processor and marinade chicken for several hours or overnight.
1 1/2 cups figs, sliced in half, or dried fruit of your choice.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Remove chicken from marinade and place in roasting pan.  Scatter figs and  pour 1 cup of the marinade over the top.  Bake for 1 1/2 hours, basting and adding marinade as needed.  Serves 8-10
Enjoy,
Irene
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9 thoughts on “Roast Chicken with Figs

  1. MMMMM……. Hi Irene, my memory of shelling walnuts is that i was unable to use the nutcraker, so i would throw the walnuts at the brick hearth as hard as i could and hope the shell would crack, i also was very pround if i got half the nut out in one piece. We moved out of that house when i was six. My family’s version of “sitting around” was that my father would peel apples. He would sit on the sofa and with a paring knife, peels the apple ( we would ask him to try and do so in one long curling peel) and then he would slice off a piece of apple and hand it to us. I think off of the knife. He would also peel grapefruit and hand out sections, i always wanted him to peel the skin off of each individual section so i would just get the pure fruit. Sometime i would pull apart the individual “droplets” of the grapefruit to eat. I really hadn’t thought about this in a long time. Thanks for brining up a sweet memory. Barbie

    • Hi Barbie,
      That’s pretty funny, throwing nuts at the hearth! My dad use to peel apples that way as well and also handed it off his knife. You could write a post Barbie, I am sure your Dad would enjoy reading it!!

      Thank YOU for commenting!!

      Irene

    • Hi Barbie,
      That’s pretty funny, throwing nuts at the hearth! My dad use to peel apples that way as well and also handed it off his knife. You could write a post Barbie, I am sure your Dad would enjoy reading it!!

      Thank YOU for commenting!!

      Irene

  2. now I am sure we are related! I have the same memories and the nutcracker. The large Brail nuts were my favorite and never liked the filberts. I have dried apricots and dates at home. Do you think that would work? If not I will buy the dried figs

  3. Yum this sounds like wonderful and the marinade appears to be easy!!! Wow directly written for me.. Awesome and enjoy . this will be a try next week.. I have done a sort of version with prunes… I will give the figs a try.. Thanks and happy holiday

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