Whenever I stay at someone’s home for more than a night, I always try and show my appreciation (and earn my keep!) by making myself useful. This recipe for chicken cacciatore or hunters chicken is a great way to warm yourself up on a surprise cold day this spring! It’s a set it and forget it meal, which won’t be a problem considering the rainy days we’ve been having. If it’s raining when you wake up, it’ll probably be raining when you go to sleep. This meal is so easy- you can use as many or as few types vegetables as you’d like, but I would advise you to stay away from carrots, as I think they take this lovely little dish far too close to stew-territory.
There are three absolute MUSTS in this dish, and the rest is up to you: 1) Bacon- I like to sauté bits in butter (or olive oil) before browning my chicken 2) BROWN. YOUR. CHICKEN- it makes such a difference! Just dredge it in flour, and then cook it on a hot pan until it is golden (about 3-5 minutes per side), it doesn’t have to cook through 3) Red wine, and lots of it. Some recipes recommend white, but I think they’re blasphemers...but you are, I suppose, welcome to experiment.
2 servings (or four if you’re not that hungry) :
4 chicken pieces (I prefer thighs and legs, but breasts work too... I know that’s what she said)
2 cloves of garlic, minced (I love garlic)
2 cups mushrooms, thickly sliced
4 slices bacon, cut up
2 cans of chopped tomatoes
1 bottle heavy red wine, cheap is fine!
Flour for dredging
Salt, pepper, basil, thyme, chili flakes, and turmeric are my favorites (add to taste)
Pasta of choice
- Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in large pot
- Season each piece of chicken with salt and pepper; cover in flour
- Add bacon to hot butter, and then chicken pieces
- Remove chicken when golden
- Add minced garlic, sliced onions and peppers--I slice them thick so they maintain their shape in the sauce-- for about 2 minutes
- Add mushrooms, stir
- Add tomatoes and as much wine as you can afford (1 cup is fine, 3/4 of a bottle is better); stir
- Season to your liking
- Add the chicken pieces, and cover with sauce
- Leave on low-medium heat for as many hours as you’d like, I recommend 2-4 hours
- Serve over pasta