Inspiration for tonight's dinner: a trusty weeknight workhorse swaps overalls for a tux. Glistening and black as night, wine-and-honey-soaked dried mission figs lend a simple chicken dinner an air of exotic luxury.
Also, any recipe that demands you open a bottle of wine, but only calls for a glass, is perfect fodder for a weeknight dinner in our book. On the side, merrill's Millet with Cheese and Chives is a warming and hearty alternative to bland and butter-laden mashed potatoes or noodles.
4 chicken breasts About 20 dried mission figs 1 cup millet 4 ounces Asiago Fresco or Fontina cheese 2 tablespoons crumbled blue cheese Chives
As always, we assume you keep a stocked kitchen and thus already have salt, pepper, milk, olive oil, honey, and a bottle of red wine. If not, what are you waiting for? Those are some darn handy things to have around!
1. Toast the millet, ever so gently.
2. Add the milk, water, oil, salt. It will now simmer for about 20 minutes.
3. How great! 20 minutes is about how long the chicken will take. Turn your attention to the chicken and figs.
4. Finish up the millet after the chicken is done. The chicken will have cooled a bit when you sit down to eat, but that's okay.
Aside: Hmmm, you only used a cup of wine in the figs. Maybe you should pour yourself a glass and maybe you should turn on Downton Abbey and maybe someone should rub your feet while you sip and savor. After all, dinner is served.
A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).
I love Champagne and cheese and potato chips. In fact, that would be the most dreamtastic dinner. I have two cats and I am a proud Portlander-by-birth currently residing on Manhattan's rich and wonderful Lower East Side in a closet that has no closets. In May I finished up a masters degree in Food Studies at NYU and now I am trying to figure out exactly why I did that and what that all means. It is very fun and scary but mostly fun. I like to cook and I love to bake.