STREAMING NOW: Simply Nigella

Braised Chicken With Green Beans, Tomatoes and Balsamic Vinegar

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“This is a favorite fall/winter recipe in my house. I modified it from a Cook's Illustrated recipe because no one (but me) likes Swiss Chard in my family. When browning the chicken, avoid overcrowding the pot--brown the thighs in two batches if all eight do not fit comfortably. Polenta, wide noodles or mashed potatoes go really well with this dish. Also, it has less calories than the Nutrition Facts calculate because you remove the skin after browning.”
1hr 10mins

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position; heat oven to 350 degrees. Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Heat oil in nonreactive Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking; add chicken thighs skin-side down and cook without moving them until skin is crisped and well browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Using tongs, turn chicken pieces and brown on second side, about 5 minutes longer; transfer thighs to large plate.
  2. Pour off all but 1 teaspoon fat from pot. Add onion and tomato paste and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally and scraping bottom of pot with wooden spoon, until tomato paste begins to darken, about 4 minutes (if bottom of pot becomes very dark and sticky, stir in 1 to 2 tablespoons water, juice from tomatoes or some of chicken broth).
  3. Add garlic and anchovy and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  4. Stir in tomatoes, chicken broth, and wine, scraping up browned bits with wooden spoon.
  5. Add red pepper flakes, thyme, and bay.
  6. Remove and discard skin from chicken thighs, then submerge chicken bone-side up in liquid, adding any chicken juices accumulated on plate.
  7. Increase heat to high, bring to simmer, cover, then place pot in oven.
  8. After 30 minutes add green beans. Cook chicken for another 10 minutes or until done (when it offers no resistance when poked with tip of paring knife but meat still clings to bone).
  9. While chicken cooks, simmer balsamic vinegar in 8-inch nonreactive skillet over medium-high heat until thick, syrupy, and reduced to 1/4 cup, 3 to 5 minutes (begin measuring volume when vinegar begins to cling to sides of saucepan). Set aside.
  10. Using slotted spoon, transfer chicken to plate and tent with foil (I don't always tent it, too lazy); discard bay leaf.
  11. Bring liquid in Dutch oven to simmer over medium-high heat and cook until the beans are of the tenderness you like.
  12. Stir about 1/3 cup sauce into balsamic reduction to loosen, then stir mixture into sauce; adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
  13. Return chicken and accumulated juices to sauce, cook long enough to warm chicken, turning once or twice. Serve immediately.

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