May 8, 2007

Roman Style Chicken

I have been watching a lot of Everyday Italian on the Food Network lately because of Giada’s wonderful recipes and I came across this hearty dish about a month ago.

Roman Style Chicken is full of many of my favorite things…tomatoes, prosciutto, garlic, capers and lots of wonderful herbs.

Try serving this the next day over a bed of angle hair pasta. Also, this recipe calls for white wine. When cooking with wine it's a good rule of thumb to only use wine you would want to drink. If you don't like the taste of the wine, you won't like it in your cooking either.

I’ve been asked a lot of questions lately about many of my recipes that include what some call “out of the ordinary ingredients.” So, I’m going to include the description of some of the ingredients that might be called in to question.

Prosciutto: is the Italian word for ham, used in English to refer to dry-cured ham. You can find prosciutto in the deli isle in your local grocery store.

Capers: is a biennial spiny shrub that bears rounded, rather fleshy leaves and big white to pinkish-white flowers. A caper is also the pickled bud of this plant. The bush is native to the Mediterranean region, growing wild on walls or in rocky coastal areas throughout. The plant is best known for the edible bud and fruit which are usually consumed pickled.

Roman Style Chicken
By Giada De Laurentiis, Food Network

4 skinless chicken breast halves, with ribs
2 skinless chicken thighs, with bones
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus 1 teaspoon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus 1 teaspoon
1/4 cup olive oil 1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
3 ounces prosciutto, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup white wine
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon fresh oregano leaves
1/2 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons capers
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

Season the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. In a heavy, large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot, cook the chicken until browned on both sides. Remove from the pan and set aside.

Keeping the same pan over medium heat, add the peppers and prosciutto and cook until the peppers have browned and the prosciutto is crisp, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, wine, and herbs. Using a wooden spoon, scrape the browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Return the chicken to the pan, add the stock, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the chicken is cooked through, about 20 to 30 minutes.

If serving immediately, add the capers and the parsley. Stir to combine and serve. If making ahead of time, transfer the chicken and sauce to a storage container, cool, and refrigerate. The next day, reheat the chicken to a simmer over medium heat. Stir in the capers and the parsley and serve.

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