Chicken Cacciatore

5 from 3 votes

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A close up of chicken cacciatore.

I put this dinner together about a month ago when it seemed that everyone, including myself, was lamenting the departure of summer.  We were in the glory of autumn.  Homecomings all across the nation, leaves in their blazing transition of colors, and still plenty of bounty from our own gardens, local markets and orchards.   With some fresh chicken in our refrigerator, 20 some pounds of tomatoes to be used, and a Saveur Italian cookbook gifted to me by my sister Chef Kathy, it seemed the perfect opportunity to make up some chicken cacciatore on that lovey fall weekend at our small lake cottage in rural Wisconsin.

A pile of fresh veggies.
On this Saturday morning, we casually promenaded among the local farmers at one of our favorite Saturday markets in the Wisconsin summer resort town of Elkhart Lake.  The usual crowd had dissipated with the resumption of school and final act of the summer season.  A new and unhurried undercurrent prevailed among this farmer’s market and as always we were happy to be there.

A close up of food on a plate, with chicken Cacciatore.

It was a refreshing and relaxed weekend, following a pretty “big one” just one week prior.  After years of coexisting as a modern family, this was the first weekend since our families first commingled, that it was now headed by two married parents.  In early October, Scott and I along with our six sons, celebrated our union, with 40 of our closest friends and family, from as far back as we can remember, from New York to California.

A close up of chicken on a plate.

Our special weekend was at held at the iconic Iron Horse Hotel, an hour or so south in the big city of Milwaukee.  Being at our rural and mostly weekend cottage in the wake of all that “city” and activity was a welcomed reprieve.

A plate of chicken cacciatore on a table.

What’s more, that Saturday evening we welcomed to the cottage, a physician colleague of mine who we recently discovered lives only a half mile or so away from us, back in town.  One of the genuinely nicest people I know and among the most skilled surgeon and docs that I have ever worked with, we were completely excited to welcome her and her family to our weekend retreat.

A plate of food on a table, with wine.

Don’t let its name fool you.  This is a basic meal, made with fresh and flavorful bounty of the land.  As pointed out in Saveur, we Americans know this dish as cacciatore (hunter’s style), but it’s really cacciatora, named in honor of the hunter’s wife – who, in parts of northern Italy, traditionally cooked it on the eve of the hunt as fuel for the chase.

A close up of food on a plate.

With scads of fresh Roma tomatoes, given to me by another work colleague, and some fresh fall fare from our favorite farmer’s market, I let this sauce simmer most of the day.  While the tomatoes, red carrots, sweet peppers and onions became well acquainted,  Scott put put together his own dessert creation of simple apple bars.    Outdoors, the boys raked piles of leaves into which they jumped, and the autumn day unfolded to a wonderful Saturday evening replete with delicious fare, frolicking children and most of all – great company.

A close up of food on a plate, with bread.
 

 

Chicken Cacciatore (Pollo alla Cacciatora)

5 from 3 votes
Adapted from Saveur Cooks Authentic Italian
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total: 1 hour 20 minutes
Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients 

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 lbs plum tomatoes, chopped with juices reserved
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley, minced
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 sweet bell pepper, coarsely diced
  • 1/2 cup fresh grated carrot
  • salt and fresh ground pepper

Instructions 

  • Heat oil in large pan over medium high heat.
  • Add onions, carrots, and peppers. Stir until soft, about 7 minutes.
  • Add garlic and cook, continue to stir, for about 2 minutes.
  • Push vegetables to side, or remove and set aside. Add chicken and fry, turning pieces several times to brown evenly, about 4 minutes per side.
  • Add wine and cook until it evaporates, about 5 minutes.
  • Return vegetables to pan, if set aside previously.
  • Add tomatoes, with their juice, to chicken.
  • Stir in bay leaf, rosemary, and parsley (reserving 1 teaspoon for garnish.)
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Reduce heat to low, partially cover, and simmer, adding chicken stock gradually as tomato juice evaporates, for 45 minutes.
  • Remove bay leaf and garnish with reserved parsley.
  • Serve with steamed potatoes or white rice.

Nutrition

Calories: 495kcal, Carbohydrates: 11g, Protein: 33g, Fat: 33g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 126mg, Sodium: 212mg, Potassium: 745mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 3139IU, Vitamin C: 42mg, Calcium: 45mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Tried this recipe?Mention @plattertalk or tag #plattertalk!

  


Meet the Platter Talk Guys

Dan & Scott split their time between Wisconsin and Southwest Florida and are dads to six boys. Good food runs through their veins, and they love showing others how to cook easy recipes.

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5 from 3 votes

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26 Comments

  1. Chicken Cacciatore is a favorite of mine, but I don’t think I have ever seen it look THIS fantastic! This is a stunning recipe. I have put the ingredients straight onto my shopping list 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    Simply fantastic, Dan! I love your post and love how your love of all things family shines through. (Goodness, there is a lot of love in that sentence.) I pinned this recipe twice – once for the public and once for my private files. Thank you for sharing this beautiful post and gorgeous recipe.

  3. 5 stars
    How many times can I say I love reading your blog? You amaze me my friend. You capture me into the moment of the story behind the recipe so beautifully and photograph it so well that one can’t help but think, “I have to make this!”

  4. My brothers used to go to camp in Elkhart. I remember it as a very quaint and gorgeous spot. What a great place to live near. And what a great recipe, too!

    1. How nice to hear from you; we love Elkhart Lake and that part of the state! Thanks for taking the time to drop by and leave a comment!

    1. Shashi,
      You’re right, this is a beautiful chicken dish! Thank you for taking the time to comment, I love hearing from you!

  5. Mmm so delicious !! we LOVE chicken cacciatore! I haven’t made it in years, this one I will be pinning it as a reminder! Thanks, Dan.