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Recipes From Under the Tuscan Sun

Everyday Italian cooking made simple

Recipes from Under the Tuscan Sun: Chicken With Artichokes

Turn your everyday chicken into a Tuscan delight. — Courtesy Steven Rothfeld

Chicken With Artichokes, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Chickpeas

Serves 6

Stick a Post-it note on this recipe, and when in doubt, turn to it. The Mediterranean flavors transform “just chicken” into a memorable dinner.

Chickpeas are a late love of ours. Just a taste of chickpea fritters, which are a favorite Sicilian street food, and we were fans. Now we roast them for snacks, serve them with herbs and tomatoes as a cold salad, and adore them in this super-fast piatto unico, one-pot dinner.

Refer to the pantry section for information on chickpeas. You can simmer them in light stock with onion, celery, carrot and garlic, or just cook them in water and season afterward. Cooking chickpeas yourself yields a much better texture than you’ll find in the soft and viscous canned ones. Artichokes partner well with the ceci. Although fresh artichokes are a primary passion, in this recipe I opt for the convenience of canned or frozen ones. If you’re using sun-dried tomatoes in dry form, plump them for a half hour in wine or olive oil.

This hearty stew calls for a big wine, such as Tenuta Sette Ponti, IGT, Crognolo. All the Sette Ponti wines are terrific.

INGREDIENTS

  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 chicken breasts, halved, skin on
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ cup red wine
  • ¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 2 14-ounce cans water-packed artichoke hearts, drained
  • ½ cup sun-dried tomatoes, slivered, or 1 cup sliced oven-roasted tomatoes
  • ¼ cup fresh thyme or fresh marjoram leaves or 2 tablespoons dried
  • ½ cup black or green olives, pitted

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Over medium-low heat, in a large, enameled ovenproof pot with a lid, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Sauté the onion, and after about 3 minutes, remove it to a medium bowl. Season the chicken breasts with the salt and pepper. Add the remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil to the pot, raise the heat to medium-high, and brown the chicken for 3 minutes per side. Add the wine, bring it quickly to a boil and then turn the heat off immediately.

Combine the onion with the parsley, chickpeas, artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes, thyme and olives. Spread the combined vegetables over the chicken, and bake, covered, for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the size of the pieces, turning the chicken once. Serve right from the pot or transfer to a platter.

Next: Baked pasta with sausage and four cheeses. »

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