Chicken with Green Olives and Prunes

by Anne Bennett on March 28, 2013

Chicekn au vinaigre

Chicken thighs with green olives and prunes, served with brown rice. How righteous can you get?

At first glance this recipe might not pique your interest. Chicken with prunes?  Has Grandma come to roost at Hungry Poodle?

Perish the thought. Prunes, now called dried plums to dispel their indelicate digestive connotation, have moved up the food chain in terms of popularity. And they’re not just for breakfast any more. Prunes can now be found in savory dishes like this one, which I came across in Eating Well Magazine years ago.

I’ve always loved the classic French dish, Poulet au Vinaigre (Chicken in Vinegar), but I’ve never been able to successfully make it at home without it ending up way too vinegary. This recipe strikes just the right balance by cutting the red wine vinegar with chicken broth.

If you’re not partial to piquant dishes, this won’t strike your fancy,  but if you are, you’ll really appreciate the tangy/sweet/salty interplay of the vinegar, prunes and olives. It’s a perennial hit at Hungry Poodle.

1 1/4 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs (I used bone-in thighs)
1 t. olive oil
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup chopped pitted green olives (I cut them in half)
1/4 cup chopped pitted prunes (I cut them into quarters)
Freshly ground black pepper

Heat oil in a nonstick skillet and sauté chicken until lightly browned, about 2 minutes per side. Add broth and vinegar and bring to a simmer. Add olives and prunes and reduce heat to low. Cover and cook until chicken is no longer pink in the middle, about 12 to 15 minutes. Season liberally with pepper.

Note: I usually thicken the sauce after the chicken is cooked with cornstarch. Mix a teaspoon of cornstarch into the same amount of water and stir into the sauce. Simmer for just a minute or two, until the sauce thickens a bit.

Do yourself a favor and don’t overcook the chicken. Turn off the heat just when it loses its pink color.

Serves 4

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Amy Kamm March 28, 2013 at 1:38 pm

I love savory dishes with dried fruit in it. So good and it adds such a richness to the dish. I will ahve to give this one a try.

Anne Bennett March 28, 2013 at 1:43 pm

Amy, I think you’ll really like this. It’s sort of French, with the red wine vinegar, but the prunes and olives take it further south, perhaps to the Mediterranean. It’s a keeper.

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