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Primal-friendly Italian food! (Fantastic Chicken Cacciatore)

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  • Primal-friendly Italian food! (Fantastic Chicken Cacciatore)

    No pictures, unfortunately, but I promise this is a winner.

    Before I went primal, I was excited to receive Marcella Hazan's classic cookbook, Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, from my mom. Then I stopped eating pasta, and the idea of flipping through an Italian cookbook lost some of its charm.

    Luckily, my mom tipped me off that I might be interested in the Chicken Cacciatore (New Version) recipe, and my goodness, I was. It's completely Primal without alterations (unless you're against cooking with olive oil, which I'm not), and--for some reason I found this really satisfying--it's not something I would have just up and done without a recipe. Also it's Italian. Really Italian.

    Here's the recipe (published here), with my comments in italics:

    Chicken Cacciatore, New Version
    by Marcella Hazan

    Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes
    • A 3.5-pound chicken, quartered (I used 5 chicken thighs instead, because I love chicken thighs)
    • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 cup onion, sliced very thin
    • 2 cloves garlic, sliced very thin
    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
    • 1/4 cup dry white wine (I think the book says 1/3 cup, which is what I used)
    • 1.5 cups fresh ripe tomatoes, skinned with a peeler and chopped, or canned Italian plum tomatoes, cut up, with their juice. Please do not peel tomatoes with a peeler. Just blanch them; it's absurdly easy. Then cut them in half horizontally (along the equator, so to speak), and squeeze most of the seeds out before you dice them. I used 5 medium-sized tomatoes-on-the-vine.

    1. Rinse chicken in cold water and pat dry.

    2. Put olive oil and onion in a saute pan large enough to hold the chicken without crowding. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent. Add garlic. Add chicken, skin side down, and saute until skin turns golden. Turn and cook chicken on the other side. (I took the onion and garlic out before I added the chicken to make sure the chicken actually got good contact with the pan. I put them back in as soon as the golden skin was achieved.)

    3. Add salt and pepper and turn the chicken a few times. Add the wine, and simmer until it is reduced by half.

    4. Add the tomatoes, reduce the heat to a very slow simmer, partly cover the pan, and cook the chicken about 40 minutes, until it is very tender and comes away from the bone easily. Turn and baste it from time to time during cooking. If necessary add a little water.

    5. Transfer the chicken to a warm dish and serve. If desired, it can be prepared in advance and reheated. (I don't have a lot of time between when I get home and when I start really wanting to eat, so I made this the night before and just heated it back up on the stove, which I think helped get the flavors nice and melty.)

    I'm sure this is supposed to be eaten with pasta or some such, but I ate it with green beans that I boiled, drained, and tossed with some Kerrygold butter. Fantastic.

  • #2
    Yum. I love chicken cacciatore. Sliced mushrooms and bell peppers also make great additions to the sauce.
    My food blog, with many PB-friendly recipes


    • #3
      I prefer Roasted Roman.
      In all of the universe there is only one person with your exact charateristics. Just like there is only one person with everybody else's characteristics. Effectively, your uniqueness makes you pretty average.