This Italian-style Rosemary Chicken and White Beans is a great everyday dinner that the whole family will love!
I am slightly torn if I am completely honest. I miss the summer and our lovely outdoor dining but I am also stupidly happy about the sweater weather and cozy meals at home. Warm and comforting dinners that gather the whole family around the table.
Speaking of the family…ours in a transition once again as our youngest has started secondary school. There is much excitement but also quite a bit of anxiety as she navigates her way around the new school, making new friends, taking a city bus to get there. I love watching her grapple with the desire for independence while not really wanting to embrace the responsibility that comes with it but all in all I just feel so proud of the young lady she is becoming. I am one of those people who actually loves change and as much I miss hearing their little feet toddling around the house as I see my children becoming taller than me, I really enjoy adult conversations we are having now!
As our kids are hitting the teen stage hard I am ever so keen on keeping family meals a permanent fixture for as long as we can. It seems like the only time they really want to talk is at dinner time, and as long as they are willing to talk I will stay and listen, at least try my best because we all know that sometimes life gets really busy and things get in the way.
One of the meals that is always popular with my family is this rosemary chicken with white beans. The tomato sauce is a riff on my very popular Puttanesca sauce but this time I’ve made it into a one pot meal by cooking chicken thighs in that bold and rich sauce and adding white beans to round it up.
Garlic, rosemary, anchovies and sweet, ripe tomatoes make this meal a huge winner. It is inspired by Italian flavours but I wouldn’t claim it as authentic in fear of incurring the wrath of Italian food purists!!
Authentic or not this rosemary chicken with white beans is always welcome at our dinner table. It’s delicious with rice or pasta! And if you are avoiding carbs, you can enjoy this hearty stew with a side of greens, broccoli or green beans. You name it!
What makes this rosemary chicken and white beans so special is the sauce. And the sauce owes its extraordinary taste to anchovies, so if you are not a fish lover, I would still try to persuade you to give anchovies a chance!
Although they smell fishy, the sauce itself won’t but they will give it that indescribable savoury taste that is not very easy to achieve without them. And don’t worry you won’t have fish chunks floating in your tomato sauce. As soon as anchovies hit a hot oil, they start to melt and turn into a paste! You can also use chicken breasts but reduce cooking time by a half.
On this note I am signing off! Until next time.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 8-10 chicken thighs
- salt and pepper
- 4 cloves garlic, sliced
- 3 fillets anchovies
- 2-3 rosemary sprigs
- 500 ml/ 2 cups tomato passata or crushed tomatoes
- 125ml/ ½ cup water
- ½ cup/70 g green olives
- 1X 400g/14 oz tin white beans, butter beans or cannellini
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.
- Salt and pepper chicken thighs and brown them over high heat in a frying pan in batches to avoid overcrowding and steaming until golden on both sides. ( You can skip oil if using non-stick frying pan.) Remove to a plate and set aside. Discard all oil but 1-2 tbsp.
- To the same pan add anchovies, sliced garlic and half the rosemary, fry over medium heat while stirring and trying to break up anchovies into a paste for 1 minute.
- Add tomato passata, water, olives, beans and bring to a boil. Taste the sauce and add salt if needed but be careful as both anchovies and olives are salty.
- Return the chicken back to the pan together with the juices that collected at the bottom of the plate and remaining rosemary. Cover with a lid and cook in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Then uncover and cook for 20 minutes longer.
- Serve with rice, pasta or a green salad for a low-carb option.