cooking with cast iron: chicken with chickpeas & skillet cornbread

chicken with chickpeas

I’ve just begun putting together my résumé for student teaching applications, and so far it’s been a somewhat daunting process to confront all of the awards I didn’t win, all of the clubs I wasn’t president of, and all of the events I didn’t attend. I immediately start comparing myself to my peers, measuring what they did against what I did not. And in sharing these feelings of mine, I don’t mean to discredit the things I have accomplished and the experiences I have grown through, I’m just being honest in admitting that I fall into that pattern of thinking from time to time. (Side note, is there a way to add “somewhat ambitious at-home baker in spare time” to my résumé? Because I think that says a lot about my character.)

After feeling a bit discouraged by the process, I took a break from writing my résumé to read through my blog roll. Today, one of my favorite bloggers shared some inspiring thoughts on navigating life, pursuing dreams, and not worrying so much about the future. It got me thinking about how I see myself, the whole picture. I thought about what matters to me, which turned me to this blog to write and publish a post for the first time in a while. I thought about the life experiences I would put on a résumé, if only I could. I’ll spare you the list of self-describing adjectives, and skip to my end realization: Some people may show up better than others on paper, but I know I am capable of doing great things in this life. Like making a difference in children’s lives. Or making truly fantastic cornbread.

adapted from bon appetit, serves four (can be halved for two, as pictured)

The star of this dish is the chickpeas – the best plate of beans I’ve ever made. This meal is simple in preparation yet rich in taste. 


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 3 lb.)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 15-oz. cans chickpeas, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce (I used mild)
  • ½ cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Lemon wedges, for serving


  • Preheat oven to 425°. Heat oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Working in 2 batches, cook until browned, about 5 minutes per side; transfer to a plate.
  • Pour off all but 1 Tbsp. drippings from pan. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring often, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring, until beginning to darken, about 1 minute. Add chickpeas, hot sauce, and broth; bring to a simmer.
  • Nestle chicken, skin side up, in chickpeas; transfer skillet to oven. Roast until chicken is cooked through, 20–25 minutes. Top with parsley and serve with lemon wedges for squeezing over.


recipe from martha stewart

A cast iron skillet gives this cornbread a perfectly golden, deliciously buttery crust.  Leftovers can be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored at room temperature for the next day’s lunch (try it with soup or chili!)


  • 1¼ cups yellow cornmeal
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1¼ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1¾ cups buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces


  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Whisk together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl; set aside. Whisk together egg and buttermilk in a measuring cup. Pour the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients and stir the batter together until completely combined.
  • Melt butter in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet or a 2-quart baking dish in oven. Remove skillet; swirl to coat bottom. Pour in batter. Bake until a tester comes out clean, 18 to 25 minutes (mine was done at 18 minutes). Cut into wedges and serve.

4 thoughts on “cooking with cast iron: chicken with chickpeas & skillet cornbread

  1. Marian says:

    Looks delish!!!!!

  2. Aunt Kate says:

    A passion for baking is quite like a passion for teaching. yes, anyone can follow a recipe but what makes that recipe unique is your own personal touch. at first you follow the recipe precisely, as time passes you learn to manipilate the ingredients to create a dish that is slightly different from the original. And as more time passes you are creating your own unique recipes that other beginning bakers are following. Your passion enables you to understand how some ingredients compliment each other and how some can be a horrible combination. Your passion drives you to continue learning, your passion drives you to try again when a recipe fails, your passion gives you a direction and a purpose in life. Teaching is vey much the same, without passion you will not walk into that classroom everday and say how can i help these young minds learn today? what can i do to make this lesson as interesting, fun and challenging as possible. How can I stimulate these young minds to think and question? That classroom is like your kitchen and that lesson is like a recipe. How you combine all those ingredients is what will make you stand out amongst those who are just following the recipe. in teaching you need passion and creativity and your passion for baking has given you the necessary tools for becoming a great teacher.   Put that in your résumé! Lol. Any school would be lucky to have you as a student teacher!!!

  3. Abby says:

    Wise words of wisdom from Katie!

  4. Abby says:

    Go out there and get it, it’s waiting for you already.

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