Chicken Cacciatore

Tender, succulent chicken pieces are cooked in this robust tomato sauce in this easy Italian classic poultry dish. Serve alongside Garlic Mashed Potatoes, or on a bed of Soft Polenta along with a sautéed green vegetable such as Broccoli Rabe Or Spinach. Cacciatore means “hunter” in Italian, and when referring to Italian cuisine, alla cacciatora refers to a meal prepared “hunter-style” with tomatoes, onions, herbs, perhaps sweet peppers, and sometimes wine. Cacciatore is most often made with braised chicken or rabbit. There are many different variations of this dish based upon ingredients available in specific regions. For example, in southern Italy, cacciatore often includes red wine, while in northern Italy white wine may be used.

I make this dish often in my cast iron dutch oven pot and play around with the recipe depending on my mood. My old recipe did not contain olives, but I found I really enjoy the piquancy they provide so I usually include some good quality flavorful olives in my cacciatore now.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2012

Chicken Cacciatore

Chicken braised in a zesty tomato sauce goes well with mashed potatoes, soft polenta, or even buttered pasta.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Boiler/Fryer, Cut Into 8 Pieces (About 3-4 Pounds)
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Medium Onion, Chopped
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Celery Stalk, Chopped
  • 4 oz. Mushrooms, Chopped
  • 1 Red Sweet Pepper, Chopped
  • 1/2 Cup Dry White Wine
  • 1 (14 oz) Can Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1/2 Cup Chicken Broth
  • 1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • 1/4 Cup Fresh Chopped Parsley
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Pinch Of Red Pepper Flakes

Optional But Encouraged:

  • 1 Cup Pitted Flavorful Olives

Directions:

  • Rinse the chicken pieces, and then pat dry.
  • Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat, and brown the chicken pieces well on both sides.
  • Remove the chicken pieces to a plate.
  • Add the mushrooms, onions, peppers, and celery to the pan drippings, and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the garlic, and cook another minute or two.
  • Add the chicken back into the skillet, and add the white wine.
  • Cook on medium heat until it has almost completely evaporated.
  • Add in the chopped tomatoes, broth and seasonings.
  • Simmer on low, covered for about 60 minutes.
  • If the sauce has not thickened, remove the chicken pieces from the pan, and bring the sauce mixture to a boil.
  • Add the olives, cook a few minutes until it has reduced and thickened.
  • Serve hot!