Saturday, January 16, 2010

Chicken Cacciatore

Pin It Now! Chicken CacciatoreThe first time I ever had this was our first night back in Colorado after living in Hawaii for a year.  Baby Wright was a month old and we had been on a flight for 6 hours and with the time change were simply exhausted.  Our amazing friends, best friends actually, took care of us.  Louis made this for dinner and it was the first home cooked meal we had had in who knows how long.  (when we lived in Hawaii cooking was not something I excelled in.  I couldn't even make eggs.  Clearly I've learned a lot since then).  This meal tastes like home.  It's fresh.  It's wholesome.  It's delicious.  It's just damn good.  And this was my first time eating Louis' cooking.  Louis probably doesn't know it, but he really inspired me to become more interested in cooking and I learned some of the most basic things from him.  I couldn't find the recipe he made that night, but this version from Giada de Laurentis is pretty damn close and tasted just as good.


  • 4 chicken thighs

  • 2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour, for dredging

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped

  • 1 large green bell pepper chopped

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

  • 3/4 cup dry white wine

  • 1 ( 28-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice

  • 3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves

  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil leaves


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 saute pan, heat the oil over a medium-high flame. Add the chicken pieces to the pan and saute just until brown, about 5 minutes per side.  Don't cook all the way through.  They will finish cooking in the sauce.  If all the chicken does not fit in the pan, saute it in 2 batches. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. Add the bell peppers, onion and garlic to the same pan and saute 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 20 minutes.

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 with rice or pasta.

*Note Giada's recipe uses chicken breasts with the bone and chicken thighs.  Her recipe also doesn't include green bell peppers.

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