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: Cannellini Bean Ragout

I’m starting to think about something warm and a little sweet, with a special bit of pizzazz for the holidays coming up. If you pull out your crockpot and make this, you will be a very happy camper. Your tastebuds and belly will thank you. And me. Probably both of us. Make it soon. Then you’ll have time to make it again for Thanksgiving, or a potluck, or a holiday party. Continue reading


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Pumpkin Chili

If you are looking for something warm, toasty and filling to make for dinner next weekend, give this pumpkin chili a try. Try to make it the previous day if possible, or maybe in the morning. If there’s time to let it simmer on a very low heat for a few hours, do so. When it’s done, just turn off the heat, let it sit for 10-15 minutes, and then serve. It is a perfect October meal-in-one, the cornmeal is already built in, and it’s rich in beans and veggies, my two favorite foods! Continue reading