Lemon White Beans with Garlic Polenta

Lemon White Beans with Polenta ++ the pear and plum

I have these lemon cravings. Sometimes its a problem. Especially because we do not live anywhere near a lemon tree and I’m always having to run out in the dead of night to buy lemons at the store. (I hear there’s this magical place called California where people actually have them IN THEIR YARDS. This, I cannot imagine.).  Anyway, When my lemon needs happen at dinner time, this is the recipe I return to. It’s just as great in the cold snowy winter as it is on a rainy summer day.

I tried to make this vegetarian but I missed the chicken so much that I added it back in. Sometimes I just need that flavor. Just one breast though so its more of an ingredient for flavor than the main event. If you want more chicken, you could add a couple more breasts.

(thanks to my friend Kathy for the original version of recipe)


  • 1 Cup Polenta
  • 3 Cups Chicken Broth
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 1 Chicken Breast, skin on
  • 1 Lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1 Bulb Fennel, shaved on a mandolin (optional)
  • 1 tsp fresh Rosemary
  • 1 tsp fresh Thyme (I used Lemon Thyme)
  • 1 Can Canellini beans
  • 1/4 Cup White Wine
  • Sea Salt
  • Fresh Cracked Pepper


  1. Cook polenta in a sauce pan according to directions using the broth as the liquid and adding the minced garlic to the broth.
  2. Cook the chicken in a covered skillet, skin side down on medium heat until almost done.
  3. When the chicken needs a couple more minutes, add the Wine. Wait about 30 seconds, then add the Lemon Zest, Juice, Fennel, Rosemary, Thyme, Beans and cover until the Chicken is done.
  4. Serve the Beans and Chicken over the Polenta. Salt & Pepper to taste

++ Note to self: The recipe is good as it stands but I may update it the next time I make it to make the polenta thinner.


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