What’s For Dinner: Chicken and Bean Stew
This is one of my favourite recipes that my mum and gran used to make. It’s awesome for any time of the year, but I made it last weekend with all of the fresh vegetables from my garden.
You can make this with lamb or beef instead of chicken, or omit all meats to make a vegetarian and vegan meal. You can also add potatoes to make it a bit thicker.
1/2 cup olive oil
3 – 3 1/2 lb chicken, cut into portions
2 lb runner beans, stringed (I used a mixture of green beans and Italian green beans because that’s what I had in the garden)
1 large onion, sliced
3-4 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon tomato puree
425 ml water
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup chopped parsley
Salt and pepper
If you use fresh tomatoes (instead of canned), place the tomatoes in a pot and pour boiling water over them (this will make removing the skin super easy). Leave for a few minutes, until the water is less hot, remove the skins and discard. Cut the tomatoes into pieces and allow to simmer for 5-10 minutes. (You can use the same method to make a fresh tomato sauce for pasta. Spice accordingly and let the tomatoes simmer for longer.)
Heat the oil in a large pan. Carefully place the chicken portions into the pan and fry for 15-20 minutes, or until browned on all sides. Meanwhile, halve the beans.
Remove the chicken and set aside. Next, fry the onions until golden brown (if you’re going to include potatoes, brown them before cooking the onions) followed by the chopped tomatoes and the tomato puree. Add the beans to the pan and continue cooking for 10 minutes.
Return the chicken to the pan followed by a seasoning of salt and pepper. Pour in the water and give it a stir. Bring to the boil and then add the lemon juice. Cover with a lid and simmer for 35-40 minutes or until tender, adding the parsley 5 minutes before cooking has completed.
Switch off the heat and leave to stand for 5 minutes before serving.