Food & Dining

Braised chicken with artichokes and olives

by Rebecca Katz

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This dish of braised chicken with artichokes and olives is among the creations of chef Rebecca Katz.    

I didn’t think it was possible to love artichokes more than I already did until I lived in Italy.

There they harvest artichokes in both spring and fall, and that abundance graces their cuisine. Artichokes also enhance their health, as they stimulate the gallbladder to produce bile, which escorts toxins out of the body and also helps break down fats in the diet.

Here, artichoke hearts are combined with chicken, chickpeas, and olives to create a rich, nourishing stew seasoned with a potpourri of heady and healthful spices, including turmeric, cumin, coriander, and mint.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Ingredients:

8 organic boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 11/2 pounds), trimmed of excess fat Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 yellow onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

Generous pinch red pepper flakes

1 cinnamon stick, or 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 bay leaf

2 cups organic chicken broth, homemade (shared in her cookbook) or store-bought

2 teaspoons grated lemon zest

3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 cup canned chickpeas, drained, rinsed, and mixed with a spritz of lemon juice and a pinch of salt

8 thawed frozen or jarred artichoke hearts, quartered

1/2 cup pitted green olives, such as picholine or manzanilla

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint or cilantro

Pat the chicken dry and season salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or heavy soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, working in batches if necessary, and cook until well browned on each side, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.

Decrease the heat to medium. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and sauté until soft and slightly golden, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add the turmeric, cumin, coriander, red pepper flakes, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Pour in 1/4 cup of the broth to deglaze the pot, stirring to loosen any bits stuck to the pot. Stir in a pinch of salt and cook until the liquid is reduced by half. Stir in the remaining 1 and 3/4 cups of broth, the lemon zest, and 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice. Decrease the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add the chicken, chickpeas, artichoke hearts, and olives and stir gently to combine. Increase the heat to medium-high and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining tablespoon of lemon juice. Taste; you may want to add another squeeze of lemon juice or pinch of salt. Garnish with the mint.



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