YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Rustic Chicken

Any minute now the tomatoes are going to begin ripening and our counters will be absolutely covered in all kinds of tomatoes, big and small, yellow and red, green and orange! If you are looking for a special recipe to use them, you’ve come to the right place! One thing that I love about this recipe is that you can do the prep work earlier in the day, set it up in no time flat, and then pull it out of the oven in time for a lovely, sunset dinner. This dish makes a great visual impression, yes, but the slow cooking process caramelizes everything to impress your taste buds just as thoroughly. Bon appetit.

  • 4 chicken legs (drumsticks + thighs connected)
  • 1 large bunch fresh basil (use whole leaves plus stalks, chopped fine)
  • 1 1/2 cups red and/or yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2-4 ripe plum or beefsteak tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 whole bulb garlic, broken into cloves (unpeeled, skins intact)
  • 1 large pinch of dried chili flakes
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • One 14.5-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup new potatoes, scrubbed and sliced
  • sea salt & fresh ground black pepper
  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Season chicken with salt and pepper, and jam together in a shallow pan in a single layer, skin sides up. Add cannellini beans and potatoes. Add basil leaves, basil stalks, and tomatoes.
  2. Scatter the garlic cloves and chili flakes on top, drizzle with olive oil, and mix, pushing tomatoes under the chicken. Place in oven, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours until the chicken skin is crisp and the meat is falling off the bone. Halfway through the cooking, flip the exposed tomatoes.
  3. If desired, to crisp the skin further, raise the temperature and/or switch to convection, or turn on the broiler for a bit at the end, rotating the pan occasionally. Watch closely to avoid burning. Prior to serving, squeeze the garlic out of the skins. Serves 4.

Thank you to Jamie Oliver for a prior version of this gorgeous recipe.

 


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Feminista White Beans

Here’s a recipe served throughout the Middle East by families, the families who love them, and the families who love to feed them. All kinds of families.

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup yellow onion, peeled & minced (approx. 1 med-large onion)
  • 1/2 cup celery, rinsed & minced (approx. 2 medium stalks)
  • 16-oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 3 cups canned white beans (navy beans or cannellini), drained and rinsed well
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil

Heat olive oil to medium-high in a large, deep skillet. Add onion and celery, lower heat to medium, and sauté until translucent and turning golden.

Add crushed tomatoes, honey, and paprika to the skillet, and stir gently until mixed. Continue to heat until mixture is simmering. Stir in the beans. Add a pinch or two of salt and a few shakes (or grinds) of black pepper.

Cover and simmer over very low heat for 25-30 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley and basil just before serving. Serves 6-8 hungry feminists (and their families).

A prior version of this recipe was published at www.vegkitchen.com. Thanks!


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: “Party Salad” or Sweet & Spicy Kale Chips

If anyone in your house is not eating as many greens as you think they ought to be (whether it’s you, or the kids, or your spouse), then make this asap! Think of it as a kind of party salad. You’ll notice that this particular recipe uses two large bunches of kale, but don’t think that’s too much: once they shrink in the oven, they turn into a moderate-sized bowl of chips at best. Continue reading


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Lentils, Grapes & Hazelnuts

You know this recipe comes straight from your dear friend who can cook incredibly authentic Lebanese food like nobody’s business (because she learned it from her own beloved mother of blessed memory) when she tells you exactly which type of green lentil she prefers for this salad and you’ve never even heard of it. Carry on. Any green lentil is better than none.

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