Chicken with Pancetta and Figs

This meal started as a frantic search for a second main dish for a friend whom didn’t eat red meat and developed into one of my favorite dishes to cook and eat. I’ve made this dish again last night for my sister and her family and they loved it! Fragrant from from the Indian spices with a touch of sweetness from the figs.  Serve dish goes well over couscous.

  • 3/4 teaspoon olive oil
  • cooking spray
  • 1 cup vertically sliced onion
  • 1 cup pancetta finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 chicken thighs ( about 2 1/4 pounds), skinned
  • 1/4 cup tawny port
  • 2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup sodium chicken broth
  • 12 Calimyrna figs, quartered
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

Fresh thyme and parsley sprigs for garnish (optional)


  1. Heat oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray.  Add onion and pancetta, sauce 3 minutes.  Remove from pan.
  2. Combine garam masala, sugar, salt, and pepper; sprinkle evenly over chicken.  Add chicken to pan, cook over medium-high heat for 4 minutes on each side or until browned. 
  3. Add port and vinegar, cook 30 seconds, scraping pan to loosen browned bits.  Add onion mixture and broth; bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.  Add figs, cover and simmer for an additional 8 minutes or until chicken is done.  Stir in parsley and chopped thyme.  Garnish with thyme and parsley sprigs if desired.


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