2 quarts water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup kosher salt
1 bay leaf
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1 teaspoon black peppercorns, coarsely smashed
8 6-ounce boneless chicken half breasts, skin on
1 Tablespoon butter
1 small onion, diced
1 small garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup toasted walnuts (can substitute pecans)
3 medium dried figs, stems removed
3 ounces cream cheese
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
2 ounces Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled (about 1/2 cup)
1 Tablespoon dry sherry or Marsala
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 shallot, diced
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup Marsala
4 cups chicken stock reduced to 1 cup
Brine: Mix water, sugar, salt, bay leaf, garlic and black peppercorns. Immerse the chicken in the brine and refrigerate for 1/2 hour-1 hour. Remove from brine and pat dry.
Stuffing: Preheat the oven to 375°F. Heat butter in a medium sauté pan over low heat until melted; add onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until deep golden brown, 15 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds longer. Transfer to a bowl and cool in freezer for 5 minutes. In a mixer or food processor, chop the walnuts and figs. Remove and set aside. Add the cream cheese and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Stir in onion mixture, thyme, Gorgonzola, and sherry; season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Stuff Chicken: On the thickest side of each chicken breast, cut a deep, 3-inch pocket. Using your fingers or a pastry bag, stuff the Gorgonzola cheese mixture into the pocket. Close by pressing the flesh together and secure with a toothpick if necessary.
Sear Chicken: In a large sauté pan, heat 1 Tablespoon oil over medium heat. Cook the chicken on one side, skin side down, until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from pan and place on a sheet pan. Finish cooking in the oven until cooked through or internal temperature reaches 150ºF, about 10-15 minutes.
Sauce: Sauté shallot in the chicken sauté pan until soft, then and add the garlic. Cook garlic for 30 seconds. Pour Marsala into the sauté pan and cook, scraping up the brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Cook until the Marsala has reduced by about half, 1-2 minutes. Add the chicken stock, and cook until the sauce is reduced to a glossy syrup, about 5 minutes. Strain and season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle reduction over chicken and serve.
Recipe created by Parties That Cook®