A classic Italian rustic comfort food, Chicken Cacciatore. If you've never tried it or might think it's a difficult dish, it's not at all. Good simple food using the most basic of ingredients but brings full flavour to the dinner table. Take a look!
First of all, Happy Valentines Day to all you romantics out there! I know romance still exists, somewhere!
My day thus far as been spent seeing a specialist at hospital for my daughter. So a nice little three hour outing. Then came home to a sick 14 year old with the flu. I'm now wading my way through the never ending laundry pile. So I thought writing a recipe might just be a great break from reality that is also know as my life.
So just back to Valentine's Day for a little minute. Who celebrates it and what does everyone get up to?
I remember Valentine's Day being special for as long back as I can remember. I know traditionally it's supposed to be a day for adult romance, but let's face it, everyone loves a good holiday.
When we were school age kids, I remember getting little punch out books at Woolco or the local drug store. They were festooned with all kind of valentines that you could either cut out or punch out. The punch out books were the fancy ones and you felt real special if you got one of those books. Or even better, if you received one of those Valentine's from a secret classmate admirer. And can I just say for the record I am talking like 6 or 7 years old! Yes, crushes start early everyone.
I even remember playing spin the bottle on Valentine's Day in Grade one! I dreaded it and when my turn came I wanted to run and hide or for a giant sink hole to swallow me whole. Surely things have moved on from the late 1970s and there's no forced kissing among 6 year olds any more...haha!
Be that as it may, it was still fun to wear your special red top to school and see how many valentines you got throughout the day. I remember seeing some kids getting what seemed like a gazillion. I would secretly feel envious as I looked down at my small handful of mostly cut-outs. I always wondered, even back then, if some kids got none? Food for thought.
Anyway, years moved along and it became fun to dress up, go to dinner, drink wine and be romantic. Then kids came along and the punch out valentines were revisited. But spin the bottle is still put on permanent hold for the six year olds.
But what's never a bad idea, Valentine's Day or no Valentine's Day is great food. Which is what we're about to look at just now.
This Chicken Cacciatore is a great mid week meal, family dinner, dinner for two dinner, dinner party dinner, well you get the idea. A great all in one pot meal that is flavoursome, hearty, and just downright delicious. So, let's take a look!
Notes about the chicken:
First of all, what kind of chicken to use. Okay, I used skinless boneless chicken thighs. You can use thighs with bone in and skin on if you prefer. In fact, you will most likely get a more flavoursome dish this way. Just keep in mind, you might need to extend the cooking time in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes longer if using chicken with bones.
I would avoid using chicken breasts for this dish because they wouldn't hold all the flavour that this dish is famous for.
I used cooking wine but if you prefer you can use chicken stock. Both are used in this dish and work well. I just prefer the flavour the wine brings to the dish.
The rest of it is pretty self explanatory in the recipe below and a pretty easy recipe at that.
Happy cooking friends and enjoy whatever you do on Valentine's Day!
Serves 4 / Prep time: 15 minutes / Cook time: 1 hour
4 - 6 Chicken thighs
1 Red pepper, thinly sliced
2 Carrots, peeled and diced
1 Large onion, peeled and roughly chopped
6 Garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
3 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Bay leaves
A few sprigs of fresh (or dried) thyme
1 Large can (400 grams) whole tomatoes
1 Cup/240 ml white wine
Fresh parsley, garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Season the chicken both sides with salt and pepper.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium to high heat. Add the chicken and cook, browning the chicken for about 5 minutes each side. Remove chicken from pan and place on a plate.
In the skillet, add remaining tablespoon of olive oil, the garlic, peppers, onions, and carrots. Stir really well and add about 1-2 tablespoons of the wine. Stir well and reduce heat to medium. Continue to cook the vegetables for about 5-8 minutes. Add remaining wine, bay leaves and thyme. Stir well and let the wine reduce for about 5 minutes.
Add the can of tomatoes and using a wooden spoon break up the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a simmer for about 2-3 minutes.
Transfer your dish to the oven and bake uncovered for around 30 minutes. Remove from oven, top with fresh parsley and serve immediately.
Click the downloadable link below to print recipe!
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