Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Roman Chicken - Inspired by a Giada de Laurentis Recipe

It's Sunday night and you have a package of chicken thighs you need to use up and you don't want to go to the store. You need something you can cook from what's on hand. Feeling uninspired, you log-on to the Food Network Web site and find an easy little recipe call "Roman Chicken". Hmmm you think, I like Rome and I like chicken. Plus an Italian dinner is always a winner on a cozy and cold early Sunday evening.

There's nothing fancy or complicated about this meal, but it's reliable and familiar. And there's certainly nothing wrong with that.

Roman Chicken
4-6 skinless chicken thighs
1 - 2 tsp Goya light seasoning salt
1 tbsp salt-free seasoning (Use something that will work with Italian flavors. I used 21 Seasoning Salute from Trader Joe's)
A good number of twirls from fresh pepper mill
1/2 bag mixed, sliced and frozen red, yellow and green peppers
1 small onion sliced
4-5 slices of turkey bacon or 3 oz prosciutto, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon fresh oregano leaves 
(Note: If using dried herbs, add to oil before bacon and peppers to release the flavor into the oil)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 cups fresh tomatoes, chopped fine in food processor
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons capers

Season the chicken with salt, salt-free seasoning and pepper. Place in fridge to marinate if you have time. If not, 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 bacon or prosciutto and cook until the  the bacon or prosciutto is crisp, about 5 minutes and set aside. Add peppers and onions 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. Add capers and serve immediately. I served this with my simple rice pilaf and roasted asparagus.

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