According to Wikipedia, Chicken Cacciatore is a general term for chicken cooked with tomatoes, mushrooms and herbs. Traditionally it would have been a “Hunter’s” dish (ie whatever had been caught or dug up that day!) and could have been made with rabbit, chicken, boar, or whatever the Hunter brought home. It could be spicy (especially if flavours needed disguising) or just herby.
This is my version of the recipe and I would probably call it “Mediterranean Chicken” but I think “Chicken Cacciatore” sounds better! Poaching the chicken first makes breast fillets (which can be dry) super juicy and also cuts down on the overall cooking time.
I think this is the ideal dinner party dish if you tend to stand chatting to guests in the kitchen, you can be chopping vegetables and preparing the first part then sit down for starters while it’s in the oven for the second part.
Ingredients (serves 6) Pre heat oven to 200c
6 Chicken breasts, evenly sized, cut large ones into 2 (Aldi have a fantastic 6 pack for just over £6)
250 mls stock (I use Marigold reduced salt Bouillon)
250 mls good red wine
Olive oil for frying
1 large onion, chopped
1 stick celery, chopped small
1 green pepper, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1 courgette, chopped
6 mushrooms, chopped
6 medium tomatoes, chopped (some people remove the skin and seeds but I put everything in!)
2 cloves garlic, chopped small
4 bay leaves, 1 tsp each oregano, sage, rosemary
- Place the chicken fillets into an oven proof dish and cover with the stock and red wine, cover and cook in the oven for 30 minutes.
- While the chicken is poaching, fry the vegetables in the olive oil in an oven proof dish. Starting with the onion and celery, fry for a few minutes, then add the peppers and courgette, fry for another few minutes then add the mushrooms and tomatoes.
- Finally, add the garlic for a minute and then the herbs, cover and simmer for the rest of the chicken poaching time.
- Remove the chicken fillets from the oven and add to the vegetables, then pour in the stock/wine/juices, stir, cover and put back in the oven for a further 30 minutes.
- Serve with rice, bread, sweet potato mash or all of the above.