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Chicken cacciatore is a classic Italian dish, which roughly translates as hunter’s stew. Early recipes might have been made with pheasant, rabbit or chicken, and each recipe was adapted for those who might be traveling or hunting for several days and would require an easy to prepare recipe for outside cooking. Wine being readily available and a drink of choice made the inclusion of wine to the recipe perfect even for the hunters.
This traditional version of chicken cacciatore is a combination of chicken, mushrooms and spices. Most commonly used spices used are thyme, parsley, and oregano, as well as salt and pepper. The dish also receives flavor from the addition of garlic, bell peppers and onions. The more traditional recipe doesn’t contain tomato sauce, and the chicken and spices form a brownish pan gravy which is just as delicious as the ‘americanized’ version of tomato gravy. We’ve grown to love Nona’s version which does contain tomatoes and sauce and can be topped with a little parmesan cheese at the table if you like. Dark meat chicken (legs and thighs work best in this recipe, but if you prefer the whole chicken you can use that as well)
This recipe does call for white wine. Use anything you have available as long as its a dry white. Alcohol cooks off, so you get the flavor and none of the tipsy. Do yourself a favor and DON’T use cooking wine!Print