This has to be, by far, the best Chicken Cacciatore I’ve made. I got this recipe from Giada De Laurentis’ Everyday Italian show on Food Network. It is very easy to make, and very tasty. Do not be tempted to omit the capers. They are a necessity in this dish, and add immensely to it. This is definitely a recipe you want to try next time you’re looking for something to make with chicken. I use all natural, boned chicken breasts, but the choice is yours. The sauce is not thick, pasty and overcooked. Rather, its light and tasty and doesn’t overpower the chicken. Deliziosa!
2 chicken breasts with skin and backbone, halved crosswise
2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
1/2 cup all purpose flour, for dredging
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 ( 28-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons drained capers
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil leaves
Sprinkle the chicken pieces with 1 teaspoon of each salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken pieces in the flour to coat lightly.
In a large heavy saute pan, heat the oil over a medium-high flame. Add the chicken pieces to the pan and saute just until brown, about 5 minutes per side. If all the chicken does not fit in the pan, saute it in 2 batches. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. Add the bell pepper, onion and garlic to the same pan and saute over medium heat until the onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the wine and simmer until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes with their juice, broth, capers and oregano. Return the chicken pieces to the pan and turn them to coat in the sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer. Continue simmering over medium-low heat until the chicken is just cooked through, about 30 minutes.
Using tongs, transfer the chicken to a platter. If necessary, boil the sauce until it thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Spoon off any excess fat from atop the sauce. Spoon the sauce over the chicken, then sprinkle with the basil and serve.
Note: If you’re chicken breasts are huge ones, you can cut in half so all the chicken pieces are the same in size and cook at the same time. To move things along, and because my chicken breasts were huge, after browning chicken, I put them in my trusty countertop convection oven, on 350° F or so, so it continues to cook. Then I put in the sauce to cook the rest of the way.