Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Yogurt-Marinated Chicken with Apricot-Fig Sauce

When I eat yogurt, it’s plain and it’s Greek. I just don’t think you can beat the rich, creamy texture and pleasantly sour tanginess of the flavor. And for the same reasons, it makes a great marinade for chicken. Give it time to penetrate the bird—at least eight hours—and it will help keep the meat moist and tender while cooking.

To keep the Mediterranean theme going, I made a simple, quick sauce for the chicken based on apricots and figs—both dried figs and preserves. The fruity sweetness makes a good complement for the savory chicken.

Dried Figs
Serves 4

  • 2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 4 6-oz boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped dried figs
  • 1/4 cup apricot preserves
  • 2 tbsp fig preserves
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar

Marinade Ingredients 
Chopped Figs
  1. Combine the yogurt, cilantro, parsley, lemon juice, and paprika in a bowl. Place the chicken in a heavy, sealable plastic bag. Add the yogurt mixture and turn several times to coat. Refrigerate at least 8 hours (or overnight).

Yogurt Mixture 
Chicken in Marinade
  1. Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat and add the olive oil, swirling to coat.
  2. Remove the chicken from the marinade and wipe off excess with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper and sear until golden brown and just cooked through, 12-14 minutes total, depending on thickness. Note: The chicken and marinade will release considerable liquid during the first several minutes of cooking. Simply allow the liquid to cook down and the chicken will then begin to sear and turn golden.
  3. Transfer to a plate and let rest 5 minutes.

Marinated, Seasoned Chicken
Chicken Beginning to Cook
After 1st Turn
  1. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small saucepan or skillet over medium-low heat. Add the dried figs and remaining ingredients and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Cook, stirring several times, until the sauce thickens slightly, 10-12 minutes. 

Sauce Beginning to Cook
Cooked Sauce
Spoon the sauce on top of the chicken and serve.

Yogurt-Marinated Chicken with Apricot-Fig Sauce


  1. This looks really great ! Thanks for sharing on the "What's for Dinner" linky!

  2. Oh, this looks so lish, and yet relatively easy to make! Can't wait to try it--thanks!