We just returned from San Francisco last night, and after a week of eating out, I just couldn't bear not having a good home cooked meal on the table tonight. But I must confess, that I'm a bit tired...(whaaahhh I know)...and cooking wasn't on my "to do" list today. It was a beautiful fall day, and all I wanted to do was get outside and work in my flower beds and garden. Besides not wanting to cook, there wasn't really much in the fridge to cook anyway, being as we had been gone for a week. I opened the freezer and stared blankly at the meager fixin's...and grabbed a package of frozen chicken. Chicken can be sooooo boring sometimes, especially when one isn't in the mood to cook. But then...the heavens opened up above me and my "ahhha" moment came. Braising chicken is a fabulous way to make a tender and majorly flavor full dish. Soooooo....
I made chicken Cacciatore. Typically, a cattiatore is a a "hunters" style dish, prepared with tomatoes, onions, herbs, mushrooms and such. I didn't have any mushrooms, but I did have a zucchini hiding out in the garden as well as a can of artichoke hearts in the pantry. So whipped this up at noon, let it braise all day, and when our chores were done, we had a hearty and delicious dish waiting for us. Superwoman...I tell ya. So that's what was for Saturday night dinner here. Hopefully Sunday will be as successful...'cause I haven't been to the market yet.
2 cups onion, sliced
2 cups red and yellow pepper, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large fryer chicken, cut into pieces
1 cup white wine
2 cups crushed tomatoes
1 cup fresh tomatoes, sliced or 1 cup stewed tomatoes
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 Tablespoon parsley
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon celery seed
2 teaspoons thyme
2 cups zucchini or artichoke hearts
4 cups rice, cooked
Season the chicken generously with the salt and pepper. In a large skillet,saute the onions and peppers together, with a bit of olive oil, until just tender. When finished, set aside. In the same skillet, brown the chicken on both sides in a little bit more olive oil. Deglaze the pan with a cup of white wine. Top the chicken with the garlic and sauteed onion and peppers. Pour the crushed tomatoes and fresh tomatoes over the chicken and sprinkle the herbs over the top. Simmer the stewing meat for an hour and half, careful not to let it boil over as it is juicy. Add the zucchini and artichoke hearts and cover. Simmer for ten minutes more or until zucchini is tender. Taste for seasoning and serve over rice if you wish. You can also serve this over pasta as well.