Chicken Paillard with Fresh Fig Salad and Blue Cheese

This was another winner, winner, sweet and salty chicken dinner! The dish starred my all-time favorite cast: figs, pancetta, blue cheese, and honey. With those ingredients alone you know every bite is full of sweet and salty yummyness!

This is really a not-so-healthy meal disguised as a "pseudo" salad but at least there's some greens thrown in to make you feel like you're eating "somewhat" healthy. This was a quick weeknight meal perfect for dining alfresco on a summer day.

Chicken Paillard with Fresh Fig Salad and Blue Cheese
From Tyler's Ultimate
2 servings

1 ½ tsp honey
2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 medium shallot, chopped
1 ½ tsp sherry vinegar
1/4 medium lemon, juiced
1/2 tsp chopped fresh tarragon (I omitted)
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 3/4 lbs.)
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 lb pancetta
extra virgin olive oil
2 oz blue cheese, crumbled (Saint Agur Blue)
1/2 bunch arugula, trimmed
1/2 small basket seasonal figs, halved
tarragon leaves for garnish, if desired

1. Prepare vinaigrette: Whisk together all of the ingredients for the vinaigrette in a small bowl and set aside.
2. Prepare chicken: Sandwich chicken breasts between 2 layers of plastic wrap and pound them very thin (about 1/4") with the side of a meat cleaver or a rolling pin. Remove chicken from plastic wrap and season well on both sides with salt and pepper.
3. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Unroll the pancetta so it looks like big strips of bacon. Add it to the pan and fry it like a tangle of bacon until the fat is rendered, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
4. Drizzle a 2-count of olive oil into the pan with the pancetta drippings. (I discarded about half of the oil left in the pan since it seemed like a lot of oil) Add the chicken and pan-fry for 3 to 4 minutes on each side to brown the breasts and cook them through. Use a spatula to remove the chicken to the paper towels with the pancetta. Add the vinaigrette to the sauté pan and heat for a few minutes, stirring, to deglaze the bits of pancetta and chicken from the bottom of the pan; take the pan off the heat.
5. To serve, arrange the chicken on a platter. Scatter the blue cheese, arugula, figs, and pancetta over. Drizzle the dressing over everything and garnish with the tarragon leaves.