Cacciatore means “hunter” in Italian. In cuisine, alla cacciatora refers to a meal prepared “hunter-style” with onions, herbs, usually tomatoes, often bell peppers, and sometimes wine. Cacciatore is popularly made with braised chicken (pollo alla cacciatora) or rabbit (coniglio alla cacciatora). A basic cacciatore recipe usually begins with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil heated in a large frying pan. Chicken parts, dusted with salt and pepper, are seared in the oil for three to four minutes on each side. A small can of peeled tomatoes is typically added to the pan along with rosemary and a half cup of dry red wine. The dish is done after about an hour at a very low simmer. Cacciatore is often served with a rustic bread or pasta on the side.
- 6 free-range chicken legs, cut into thigh and drumstick
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 medium brown onions, peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 ½ cups dry white wine
- 400g can whole tomatoes, chopped with juices
- 1 ½ cups chicken stock
- ½ cup black olives
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary leaves
- 2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- Heat oil in a large pan over medium to high heat. Add onions, garlic and sea salt and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes until soft. Remove onions from the pan, add the chicken and fry, turning pieces to brown evenly.
- Put the onions back in, add wine and cook until wine reduces to a couple of tablespoons.
- Add tomatoes with their juice, chicken stock, olives, bay leaf and rosemary. Reduce heat to low, and simmer for 30-40 minutes.
- The chicken should be cooked but not falling off the bone, and the sauce should have thickened. Check the seasoning, add a good grind of pepper and fold the vinegar through.
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