Braised Chicken w/Dried Plums and Green BeansOooh, I adore my Dutch oven. The recipe for “Braised Chicken with Dried Plums,” from the September 2008 issue of Everyday Food, allowed me to simmer coveted chicken thighs in a 2007 Argentinian Sauvignon Blanc, along with dried plums, of all things. How wonderful. We enjoyed moist meat with a pronounced wine flavor. The prunes cooked soft and sweet, pairing nicely with that same wine.

I browned my chicken thighs in my Dutch oven for 4 minutes per side. After cooking the onion in the thickened wine “gravy,” I added the browned chicken and cooked for another 10 minutes. I tossed in the prunes and cooked for 2 minutes more. And that was it! A lovely dish to be proud of.

A worthy side dish with my chicken was the “Sauteed Green Beans with Smoked Paprika and Almonds,” from the November/December 2008 issue of Cook’s Illustrated. Of course, we don’t really need a string bean recipe, but here was an opportunity to once again use La Chinata smoked paprika, combined with toasted slivered almonds. This textured, garlicky dish benefited from the crunchy almonds and warm paprika. My string beans turned “spotty brown” in the skillet after 8 minutes. Very easy and very satisfying.

RECIPES: lavish your meal with wine-soaked chicken and prunes, and keep the pace with smoky string beans
PREP TIMES: you’ll definitely eat within the hour
TASTES: moist chicken swims with sweet prunes in luscious wine; string beans snap with garlic, almonds, and paprika

I haven’t had enough of this lovely Sauvignon Blanc! Next time, I’ll use it to cook “Chicken-Sausage and Bean Casserole with Sage,” from the November 2008 issue of Everyday Food. See what happens when you come back to my site on Sunday, March 15.