Torn Pasta Fagioli with Chicken, White Beans and Lemon Butter

Courtesy of Chef John Brandt-Lee

Torn Pasta Fagioli, Chicken, White Beans, Lemon Butter

- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small shallot, minced
- 1/8 teaspoon chili-pepper flakes
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- ½ cup chicken stock or braising liquid
- 2 picked braised chicken thighs (see braised chicken thigh recipe)
- 1/4 cup fresh thyme leaves
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- ¼ cup diced zucchini
- ¼ cup white beans drained
- ¼ cup kidney beans drained
- 1 lemon
- ¼ cup fresh chopped parsley
- 1 lb fresh pasta of your choice

Cook pasta according to directions in salted boiling water al dente. While pasta is cooking heat a large sauté pan medium flame. Add; 1/2  of olive oil, ½ of butter, garlic, shallot & pepper flakes  and sauté until garlic lightly
browns and shallots become translucent about 2 minutes. Add white wine and cook until reduced by half. Add chicken stock, chicken, thyme, zucchini, white beans, kidney beans and lemon. Let simmer for 5 minutes or reduce by half.
Over low heat add remaining butter and parsley. Toss with pasta and finish with remaining olive oil. Serve immediately.

Ingredients - Braised Chicken Thigh
- 8 Chicken thighs, skin on
- To taste Fresh ground sea salt and black pepper
- 2 Tbsp Olive oil
- 2 Ttbsp Butter
- 3 Carrots, peeled and diced
- 4 stalks of Celery, diced (reserve green leafy tops)
- 1 medium Onion, diced
- To taste Fresh thyme
- 1 cup Dry white wine

Enough good quality chicken stock, low sodium to submerge thighs ¾ of the way up in the pan

Season your thighs with salt and pepper on all sides. In large skillet, braising pan or cast iron Dutch oven, add oil over medium to high heat. When oil is very hot, almost smoking, add chicken thighs, skin side down. Lower the heat to medium.
Do not move thighs once in pan for at least one minute, you want to get a nice crispy golden brown color on the skin. Once skin is a nice golden brown remove from heat and set aside. Add butter, carrots, celery, onion and thyme. Allow this to
cook down until the onions become very translucent, about 5 minutes. Be sure to agitate frequently and scrape all the goodies from the bottom of the pan. Deglaze your pan with white wine and reduce by half. Place chicken thighs back in pan on
top of vegetables skin side up. Add enough chicken stock to cover the thighs ¾ of the way up the side and bring to boil. Cook over medium to high flame until liquid starts to boil. Place pan with no lid in 400 degree oven for 45-55 minutes. 
Remove pan from oven and place chicken thighs on a serving platter. With a slotted spoon, remove vegetables and spoon over chicken thighs. Place the sauté pan back on your stovetop and turn your burner to medium-high heat and allow the braising
liquid to reduce by about 3/4 or until it becomes thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. A good trick is to add a Tbsp or two of butter. This will help the sauce to thicken and gives it a rich flavor. Spoon a little sauce over thighs and serve
the rest in a gravy boat. Garnish the platter with raw celery leaves.

A few variations to this dish:
If you have extra time: The night before place the thighs in a shallow baking dish coat with olive oil and any aromatic you would like to infuse the chicken with, pepper, thyme, garlic, red pepper flakes, rosemary. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to marinate over night

Short on time: Rough chop you celery, carrots and onions. In pot or Dutch oven sauté the vegetable for about 4 minutes in butter and olive oil. Add seasoned chicken thighs (salt and pepper) to the pot. Deglaze with some white wine and add enough stock to completely cover the chicken. Bring to a boil and the reduce to a simmer and allow to cook on stovetop with lid semi ajar for about 45 minutes. Take enough liquid from the pot and reduce by ¾ with a Tbsp or two of butter and salt and pepper to taste to make a sauce. Benefit: Strain remaining liquid and freeze for next time. It gets with each use about four times.

Make changes: This is a great dish to play with and make changes that match your pallet. You can make lots of substitutions. For example, change your vegetables to mushrooms and your wine to balsamic Vinegar.  Or, just use onions and red wine, the combinations with chicken are endless.

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