Butternut squash, figs & chicken
I originally planned to make a different salad using the lovely ripe figs I had, but had a spontaneous dinner guest, who didn’t like blue cheese (I’ll do this recipe another time!).
Instead, I quickly scoured my cook books to find another, more appropriate fig-base recipe and came across one in Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem (why, of course!).
The following recipe is a lovely little borrow and tweak. He uses goat cheese in his original recipe, roasted sweet potato with sweet figs, but I replaced this with chicken to make it more substantial as a main course to feed friends. I also replaced the sweet potato with butternut squash, only because the friend for whom I was cooking was avoiding potatoes. It went down very very well and was easy enough to prepare whilst having a chat in the kitchen – perfect!
You will need:
2 free range chicken breasts, seasoned and bashed out flat with a rolling pin
4 large spring onions, sliced
1 red chilli, sliced
1 medium butternut squash, cut into wedges (skin on)
4 ripe figs, each cut into 8 slices
40 ml balsamic vinegar
1 – Start by preheating your oven to 220 degrees; place the squash on a baking tray skin-down, with some seasoning and oil drizzled over the top and bake until just cooked through (but not mushy!)
2 – Meanwhile, heat some oil in a griddle pan and then add your chicken breasts; cook for 4 minutes or so on each side until just cooked through, and then set aside to cool
3 – Next, move onto the chilli and spring onion; sautee briefly in a pan with a little oil until the onions just turn translucent
4 – Now it’s time to make the balsamic; simmer the vinegar together with the sugar in a small pan until it reduces (about 4 minutes) – set aside to cool
5 – Once everything is cooked, assemble the salad by tossing all of the ingredients you’ve prepared (squash, chicken, onions, chilli) and the figs together and drizzling over the balsamic; serve immediately!