Chicken Cacciatore

Photo Taken by Nicole Ramos

I love Italian food.  Growing up I imagined myself rich and living in Italy by the beaches and always, ALWAYS surrounded by the most amazing food.  Who doesn’t dream of that??  Now that I’ve grown up, I have tasted many different dishes from various cultures and although I’ve refined my palate, Italian food will always have a major part of my heart or is it stomach…? 

Chicken Cacciatore was a dish created during the Renaissance Period and mainly eaten by the upper class.  Cacciatore means “Hunter’s Style” and is considered a stew. It can be served with noodles tossed in olive oil or my favorite rice.

Serves:  4 Level:  Easy Prep Time:  15 min. Cook Time:  40 min.

Ingredients:

  • 4              bone-in chicken breasts
  • 1 TBS     House Seasoning
  • 3 TBS     Olive oil
  • 1 lg.        red bell pepper
  • 1 lg.        zucchini
  • 1 lg.        yellow bell pepper
  • 1              onion (chopped)
  • 1 pkg     mushrooms (sliced)
  • 3-4          garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1 C          white wine (preferably a buttery chardonnay)
  • 1              14.5 oz can of fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • ¾ C         chicken broth
  • 3 TBS     capers (drained)
  • 1 ½ tsp  Italian seasoning
  • ½ C         fresh basil (coarsely chopped)

Directions:

  1. Chop all the peppers and onions.  Cut the zucchini in half moon shapes, slice up the mushrooms and mince the garlic, then set them all aside in a large bowl. 
  2. In a 5-QT heavy sauté pan, heat the oil on a medium-high heat.  Season with the house seasoning and add the chicken pieces to the pan and just brown each side (≈ 5 min.).  If all the chicken doesn’t fit, do it in two batches.  Set the chicken aside when done
  3. Add the vegetables & garlic to pan.  Season with a little house seasoning & sauté over medium heat.
  4. Add wine and simmer until reduced by half. Add tomatoes with juices, capers, Italian seasoning & broth.
  5. Return the chicken to the mixture & turn over to coat the chicken.  Bring the sauce to a simmer.
  6. Continue simmering on medium –low heat until chicken is cooked (≈ 30 min.).
  7. Use tongs to serve chicken and spoon sauce over it, then garnish with fresh basil.

This dish will pair well with a Chianti Classico or any Sangiovese based wine.

I was one of the fortunate kids that had a mother that made me breakfast and dinner every night, so my tastes have always been closely tied with home style and/or authentic cooking.  When I first decided to try this recipe, I poured over many different recipes and decided that Guida de Laurentis was going to be close as I was going get.  I loved watching her show, Everyday Italian and I’m glad to have tried this recipe, I made a few modifications and additions (as I always do).

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