This week’s recipe is the perfect ‘Summer to Autumn’ dish. As the days begin to get shorter and we descend into winter darkness, we’re on the lookout for heartier meals that provide ultimate ‘comfort factor’. This Chicken Cacciatore (as found on the brilliant website, Food 52) is warm and filling with the tomato and olive base making it equally fresh and appertising. This is also a simple recipe to cook and prepare. Once the ingredients are in the pan, it can be left to simmer for up to 40 mins, allowing you to maximise the time spent enjoying your Beachspoke holiday.
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
1 cup all-purpose flour seasoned with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 slices bacon, chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded, cored, and sliced
1 red bell pepper, seeded, cored, and sliced
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
4 ounces white or brown button mushrooms, sliced
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seed
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
One 14- to 15-ounce can whole plum tomatoes
8 ounces tomato sauce
8 ounces chicken broth
1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup torn fresh oregano leaves
Grated parmesan for serving
Coat the skillet with olive oil, up the sides of the pan about 1/4 inch, and heat. Dredge the chicken thighs in the seasoned flour and brown each side until golden. Remove the thighs and set aside.
Drain the oil from the skillet and add the chopped bacon. Cook until almost crisp and then add the 2 peppers, onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Sauté for a few minutes. Stir in the dried basil, dried oregano, ground fennel, red pepper flakes, and salt. Continue to sauté until you can smell the garlic, another few minutes.
Crush the plum tomatoes with your clean hands to break them up and add to the skillet along with the juices from the can. Add the tomato sauce and chicken broth.
Return the chicken thighs to the skillet, skin side up, and bathe the sauce over the pieces. Bring everything up to a simmer and continue to simmer, partially covered, for 30 to 40 minutes. After the 30 to 40 minute simmer, stir in the fresh basil and oregano.
Serve a chicken thigh and some of the sauce with peppers over riece or soft polenta. Shower a little Parmesan over the top and enjoy!
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