A classic Italian stew, Chicken Cacciatore is hearty, rustic and it makes for an ideal family-style dinner. Ladle over spaghetti or rice for a more complete meal.Or else, slice up a couple of crusty bread for mopping up that delicious gravy.
Ingredients (feeds 4):
1kg chicken thighs (you can switch it with 1 whole chicken, cut, or any other preferred chicken parts)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 capsicum (green, red or yellow, up to you)
400gm mushrooms (I used a mix of portobello, browns and white buttons)
1 large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
Crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup white wine (use a dry variety, I used a chardonnay. If using wine isn't an option, chicken stock is a viable substitute. You can also opt for a half cup white wine-half cup stock variant)
1) Heat olive oil in pan, and brown chicken that's been seasoned with salt. Remove from heat and set aside.
2) Using the chicken fat-infused oil, fry onions and garlic until fragrant and onions translucent.
3) Add capsicums, and fry for a couple of minutes till just softened.
4) Add mushrooms and fry for a minute.
5) Add wine.
6) Add tomatoes, and juice.
7) Return chicken to pan.
8) Add bay leaf and half tsp of thyme, and lower heat to let the chicken cook and simmer for about half an hour. If you prefer a fall-off-the-bone texture, simmer for 40 minutes on medium heat.
9) The liquid should be reduced to half its starting amount, into a rich thick-ish gravy. Salt to taste, add a pinch of red pepper flakes (depending on how spicy you'd like the stew) and serve.
Variations: Add about 8 capers for a salty tang. And/or add oregano for a more layered herby taste.