Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Chicken Hunter Style - Pollo alla Cacciatora

The chicken is the “hunter style” the Roman way (bianco) and it is modestly simple. If you were from Tuscany, they would tell you the dish is Tuscan, and the Sicilians from Sicily. Every one loves this one. Mario Batali makes his with tomatoes but for me, there is no place for tomato in this dish. One does not typically “hunt” for chicken unless poaching the neighbor’s yard. The dish is based on wild rabbit, which was loved well but was not available in the dead of winter.

One 3 pound chicken, cut up into pieces
1 Cup or so small whole boiling onion, peeled
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 Sprigs of rosemary, stemmed, chopped
4 Tablespoons olive oil
Crushed red pepper
Salt to taste
1 Cup or more Italian dry white or red wine

Heat olive oil in a fry pan equipped with a lid. Add onions and sauté on low, turning often, until onions take on some color. Remove onions for later. Add crushed red pepper to oil and chicken pieces. Sauté the chicken, turning pieces as they cook until lightly golden on all sides. Add garlic and stir for 1 minute.  Add back onions. Add wine and cover. Simmer 25 minutes and more wine as necessary as chicken needs to simmer with a little liquid to braise. To finish, remove lid on pan. Correct seasoning. Raise heat to reduce the pan’s sauce. Serve with rustic Italian bread like Casareccio.


1.      Casareccio means bread made at home. In Rome the most representative version is made as Pane casareccio di Genzano

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