I’ve been a subscriber to the Nutrition Action Healthletter for years and years. This recipe originally appeared there, as a quick healthy easy weeknight dinner. They called it “Chicken and White Bean Cassoulet”, but since the bulk of the recipe is cabbage, not an ingredient one would find in any traditional French Cassoulet, I renamed it.

I am always on the lookout for tasty things to do with cabbage, as its nutritious, inexpensive, and stores very well. (My other favorite cabbage dish here). I almost always have one or two on hand. In fact, I made this recipe with one I harvested back in September of 2019. Yeah, I lost a few outer leaves over the winter. But plenty good was left to make this recipe.

This is a great recipe to make with pantry staples or inexpensive grocery run ingredients, which, given the current level of coronavirus fall out, is probably a good thing. I’ve taken several liberties with the original recipe, grilling the chicken breast for extra flavor and substituting real bacon for the turkey bacon originally called for. It’s not a looker, being white on white on white. But the flavor is excellent.

Chicken, Cabbage and White Bean Bake with Rosemary

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: moderate
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A hardy satisfying meal from pantry staples

Fresh rosemary really makes this dish sing, and the breadcrumbs are essential for texture in this otherwise soft dish. Substitute something like chopped almonds for the bread crumbs if you aren’t doing grains.

Ingredients

  • salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 12-16 oz skinless boneless chicken breast
  • 2-4 slices bacon (sub turkey bacon if you like)
  • 6 cups sliced cabbage (about one small or 1/2 large). Bagged slaw mix is also fine.
  • 3 cups onions, sliced into half moons (about 2 good sized ones)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (heaping 1/4 tsp powdered if that’s all you have on hand)
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary (or 1 tsp dried, crumbled)
  • 1 19 oz can white beans (cannelloni or other), rinsed and drained (or whatever size you have on hand that is close)
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs (or whatever you have, up to and including stale fresh bread blitzed in a food processor). Courser is better here. We’re looking for some texture and crunch.
  • Squeeze of lemon or sprinkle of balsamic vinegar

Directions

Preheat oven to 375. Coat a 3 quart casserole with cooking spray (or use a 9 x 12 baking pan).

Sprinkle chicken breast liberally with salt and fresh ground pepper and a pinch of dried rosemary. Throw on grill and cook until JUST cooked through, which for me was a total of 25 minutes, flipping once.

OR, heat about a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet and heat over medium-high heat, add chicken and cook until just done through, about 7 to 10 minutes per side.

OR just use left over chicken from whatever you made earlier in the week, or a rotisserie chicken. There is no wrong answer here. Just get some chicken protein in the dish.

Once cooled, cut chicken into 3/4 inch cubes and set aside.

Cook bacon in the same skillet until fat is rendered and bacon is crispy. Remove bacon, crumble and set aside. Add onions to pan. Saute onions in bacon fat until they are translucent and browning on the edges, about 5 minutes. If you used turkey bacon, you may need to add a bit of olive or other oil to the pan. Once onions are cooked, add in garlic, stirring until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Then add in sliced cabbage and stir everything together. Saute until cabbage is wilted and tender crisp, about 4 minutes. DON’T overcook the cabbage. You want some texture here.

In large bowl, or in the skillet if there’s room, combine cabbage/onion/garlic mixture, diced chicken, remaining rosemary and rinsed white beans. Pat into casserole dish and sprinkle top with breadcrumbs

Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes (5-10 minutes less if using a 9 x 12 shallow baking dish), or until heated through and breadcrumbs begin to brown. Top with crumbled bacon. A hit of acid (lemon juice, a sprinkle of balsamic) adds a nice balance.

Not a looker, but filling and tasty.

© 2020 Miles Away Farm, where we’re miles away from being hungry, and are doing our part to flatten the curve, staying home and getting lots of spring tasks done here on the farm. I DID buy another big green cabbage at the grocery store the other day. Cause its never good to be out of cabbage.