I mostly chose this dish because of the cute name. Chicken in “Sandals"—just think about it, can you imagine what a sandal that a chicken wears would look like? Would it be a sling back? A thong? Leather? Rubber? I was sort of thinking about an early aughts thonged kitten heel for this chicken, something beach-y but elegant, maybe with a rhinestone adornment. Once I made the dish I understood the name immediately. With tropical flavors from the pineapple, a balance of sweet and savory juiciness, I was immediately transported to a mythical beach, sand between my toes, sweat dripping down my temple, gorgeous orange sunset burning before me.
The dish was really simple to prepare, and although the ingredient list is a little long, you’ll be able to find them all at your local grocery store. I finished my version with rice, a squeeze of lime and torn cilantro.
What you'll need:
3 tablespoons butter
1 white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
⅔ c chopped ham
¾ c skinned and chopped chorizo
1 apple, cored and sliced
1 pear, cored and sliced
5 pineapple slices, diced
1 sweet potato, peeled and sliced
2 tablespoons capers
4 tablespoons almonds
4 tablespoons raisins
pinch of saffron strands, slightly crushed
pinch of ground cinnamon
pinch of ground cloves
6 boneless chicken breasts
1 cup red wine
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1. Melt the butter in a flame proof terra cotta pot or sauce pan (I used a dutch oven). Add the onion and garlic and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes, until slightly browned. Add the tomatoes, ham and chorizo and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
2. Add the apple, pear, pineapple, sweet potato, capers, almonds, raisins, saffron, cinnamon, and cloves. Cover and cook on low heat for 15 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat.
3. Remove and reserve 2 cups of this mixture. Cover it so it stays warm and leave the rest in the pot. Add the chicken to the pot, putting it on top of the fruit mixture. Pour in the wine, cover, and simmer for 35 minutes or until chicken is tender and cooked through. Season with Salt and pepper.
Remove the pot from the heat and serve immediately with the reserved ham, vegetable and fruit mixture.