It was a stressful day at work and when I got home I was in the mood to cook and de-stress. I somehow got the mood to cook some Chicken Cacciatore and googled for some recipes. I’ve not made it before, not sure if I’ve tried it before but I often see it on menus and cooking shows. It sounded delicious and the many times I’ve had the urge to make it…I’m always missing some key ingredients. This time, I was lucky to have all the major ingredients needed.
Chicken Cacciatore is actually an Italian dish. According to Wikipedia, Cacciatore means hunter in Italian and in cuisine, "alla cacciatora" refers to a meal prepared "hunter-style" with tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, herbs, often bell pepper, and sometimes wine. Cacciatore is popularly made with braised chicken (pollo alla cacciatora) or rabbit.
I went with a recipe by Giada de Laurentiis of Food Network. The recipe looked a little different, I followed the most part of it and tweaked a tiny bit by leaving out chopped basil (coz I don’t have any) and adding chili flakes (coz I see some recipes that calls for it).
I love the result of the Chicken Cacciatore. It went well with the bottle of red wine we opened for dinner. That was a great week night dinner. Can’t complain when there’s wine with the meal. =)
CHICKEN CACCIATORE RECIPE
- 8 Chicken Thighs (Skinless and Boneless)
- 2 Tsp Salt (Plus more to taste)
- 1 Tsp Fresh Ground Black Pepper (Plus more to taste)
- 1/2 Cup All Purpose Flour
- 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Large Red Bell Pepper, Chopped
- 1 Onion, Chopped
- 3 Garlic Cloves, Finely Chopped
- 3/4 cup Dry White Wine
- 1 ( 28-ounce) Can Diced/Crushed Tomatoes
- 3/4 Cup Chicken Broth
- 3 Tbsp Capers, Drained
- 1 1/2 Tsp Dried Oregano Flakes
- 1 Tsp Chili Flakes
Sprinkle the chicken pieces with 1 teaspoon of each salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken pieces in the flour to coat lightly.
In a large heavy sauté pan, heat the oil over a medium-high flame. Add the chicken pieces to the pan and sauté just until brown, about 5 minutes per side. If all the chicken does not fit in the pan, sauté it in 2 batches. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. Add the bell pepper, onion and garlic to the same pan and sauté over medium heat until the onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the wine and simmer until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes with their juice, broth, capers and oregano. Return the chicken pieces to the pan and turn them to coat in the sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer. Continue simmering over medium-low heat until the chicken is just cooked through, about 30 minutes for the breast pieces, and 20 minutes for the thighs.
Using tongs, transfer the chicken to a platter. If necessary, boil the sauce until it thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Spoon off any excess fat from atop the sauce. Spoon the sauce over the chicken, then sprinkle with the basil and serve.
June’s comments: I served my chicken cacciatore over some home made mashed potatoes (did I tell you it’s easy to make your own?) and steamed green beans. You can always serve the chicken cacciatore over some pasta or steamed rice.